Duke expended plenty of emotions and energy while beating rival North Carolina Saturday and hoped it had more to pour into Monday night’s game at No. 19 Miami.
That hope proved unfounded.
The Blue Devils’ offense faltered as they fell into a 12-point hole before they made their first shot as Miami rolled to a 81-59 ACC basketball win at Watsco Center.
Two days after beating the Tar Heels 63-57 at Cameron Indoor Stadium, Duke missed 16 of its first 20 shots against the Hurricanes. The Blue Devils (17-7, 8-5 ACC) finished at 40.7% from the field, making just 5 of 19 3-pointers while turning the ball over 21 times. That tied for Duke’s most turnovers in a game this season.
“We’ve just got to do more together,” Duke junior guard Jeremy Roach said. “When we get down, we can’t just go one on one. We can’t play hero ball. We’ve got to move it and do what we’ve been doing all season.”
Duke coach Jon Scheyer credited Miami for strong play, but also lamented the role his team played in the turnovers by not being strong with the ball.
“Some of them they were aggressive and got in the passing lanes,” Scheyer said. “Other ones we just lost the ball. I mean literally just lost the ball.”
Ryan Young and Dereck Lively each scored 11 points to lead Duke while Roach scored 10, a sign of how little production the Blue Devils got from their perimeter game.
The smaller Hurricanes even gained a 38-31 rebounding edge over the Blue Devils, who have a pair of 7-foot freshmen in the starting lineup in Kyle Filipowski and Lively.
“They came out and punched us in the mouth and we didn’t respond,” Filipowski said.
Miami (19-5, 10-4) shot 47.8% and had four players — all starters — score in double figures. Norchad Omier led the way with 17 points, while Jordan Miller added 16. Wooga Poplar scored 14 points and Isaiah Wong tallied 11.
After jumping to a 13-1 lead, Miami led 40-26 at halftime and scored the first nine points of the second half to squash any hopes Duke had for a comeback.
Scheyer admitted playing on the road against a ranked team two days after playing an emotional rivalry game was hard for his team. But, he pointed out, Miami also played on Saturday, winning an ACC-leading Clemson, 78-74.
“Yeah it’s tough,” Scheyer said. “It’s not easy. But it’s what you have to do. They played Saturday, too. So there’s no excuses. It’s part of playing in the ACC. It’s part of playing big-time basketball.”
Duke’s struggles on offense were evident from the game’s start as Miami scored the first five points and built a 13-1 lead before the Blue Devils made their first shot from the field.
By the time the teams had played 14 minutes, Duke had nearly as many turnovers (nine) as points with Miami leading 26-10. At that point, Duke had made just 4 of 20 shots, including 1 of 8 on 3-pointers.
Meanwhile, Miami kept pouring it on with its balanced scoring. Miller had 14 points at halftime while Omier scored 10 points and Wong nine.
The Hurricanes’ lead grew as large as 17 points when Wong hit two free throws to put them up 34-17 with 3:33 to play.
A couple of Young baskets helped Duke slice the deficit to 12 points at 36-24. But baskets in the final minute from Miller and Omier gave Miami a 40-26 halftime lead.
This story was originally published February 6, 2023 8:57 PM.
Steve Wiseman has covered Duke athletics since 2010 for the Durham Herald-Sun and Raleigh News & Observer. He placed second in both beat writing and breaking news in the 2019 Associated Press Sports Editors national contest. Previously, Steve worked for The State (Columbia, SC), Herald-Journal (Spartanburg, S.C.), The Sun Herald (Biloxi, Miss.), Charlotte Observer and Hickory (NC) Daily Record covering beats including the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints, University of South Carolina athletics and the S.C. General Assembly. He’s won numerous state-level press association awards. Steve graduated from Illinois State University in 1989.