DURHAM, N.C. -- The rematch of one of college basketball’s best games of the season ended with Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim ejected after he charged onto the court to argue a block/charge call.
Rodney Hood scored 13 points and drew that game-changing charging call that helped No. 5 Duke beat No. 1 Syracuse 66-60 on Saturday night.
Freshman Jabari Parker had 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Blue Devils (22-6, 11-4 Atlantic Coast Conference).
Jerami Grant had 17 points and C.J. Fair, the player who was called for the charge, finished with 13 for the Orange (25-2, 12-2).
"I just thought that was the worst call of the year, that’s all," Boeheim said. "I hated to see the game decided on that call."
The first meeting between these teams was an overtime game considered an instant classic. The rematch was just as close but it will be remembered more for Boeheim’s exit with 10 seconds to play.
Syracuse had the ball down 60-58 when Fair drove for an apparent tying layup.
But official Tony Greene whistled Fair for charging -- and Boeheim shot onto the court to argue. Greene slapped him with two technical fouls and ejected him.
"I thought it was a block or a no-call," Fair said. "I don’t think there was that much contact, either."
Quinn Cook iced it by hitting three free throws with 10.4 seconds left to make it 63-58.
That helped the Blue Devils bounce back from a loss to hated rival North Carolina less than 48 hours earlier. It meant they avoided their first regular-season losing streak since 2009 and it extended their winning streak at Cameron Indoor Stadium to 31 games.
Meanwhile, the Orange -- whose 25-0 start was spoiled three nights earlier by an overtime loss at home to sub-.500 Boston College -- are the first top-ranked team to lose twice in a week since Texas in 2010.
Star freshman Tyler Ennis finished with nine points on 2-of-13 shooting and he and fellow starting guard Trevor Cooney combined to miss all five of their 3-point attempts for the Orange.
Three times in the final 90 seconds, they had the ball down by three or fewer points -- but all anyone will remember is that drive by Fair.
He blew past Tyler Thornton along the left baseline and flipped up a shot that banked in, but Greene blew his whistle and waved it off to call Fair for charging.
That brought Boeheim off the bench and well inside the lines to argue, and when he was tossed, the game was effectively over.
Duke appeared to take control down the stretch, scoring on six consecutive trips -- keyed by Cook’s 3-pointer that pushed its lead to 53-47 with just under 7 minutes left. Three possessions later, Parker soared to dunk the rebound of Hood’s missed 3 -- which restored the Blue Devils’ six-point lead and sent the Cameron Crazies into earsplitting delirium.
But Ennis followed with a layup and Grant hit a jumper in transition, and things stayed tight until the technical fouls.
The game again matched the two winningest men’s coaches in Division I history in Hall of Famers Mike Krzyzewski and Boeheim -- who, by the end of the night, combined for 1,924 victories.
Round 1 went to Boeheim earlier this month in a game for the ages, with the Orange claiming a 91-89 victory in overtime after Duke’s Rasheed Sulaimon hit a buzzer-beating, tying 3 at the end of regulation before 35,446 fans at the Carrier Dome.
"Another great game. Different from the first one because it seemed like both teams were scoring easy up in Syracuse, and today it was really difficult to score," Krzyzewski said. "I don’t know how either team could play any harder."
There were about one-quarter of that many at 9,314-seat Cameron -- but the 74-year-old building rocked all night with a ferocity usually reserved for the annual visit from North Carolina.
And from the opening tip, this one felt like a continuation of that OT thriller -- with players from both sides turning in highlight-reel plays, from Marshall Plumlee’s vicious dunk of a missed 3 by Sulaimon, to Ennis’ emphatic block of a layup by Cook.
Syracuse maxed out its lead at nine on a 3-pointer by Duke transfer Michael Gbinije midway through the first half. The Blue Devils rallied to tie it at 26 at the break on Sulaimon’s fast-break layup with about a minute left, and it stayed tense the rest of the way.
No. 2 Florida 75,
OXFORD, Miss. -- Marshall Henderson’s early hot shooting helped put Mississippi in position to pull off an upset victory over No. 2 Florida.
But his touch disappeared in the second half and so did the Rebels’ chances at a galvanizing victory.
The Gators fought off Henderson and the Rebels for a 75-71 victory on Saturday afternoon at Tad Smith Coliseum. Scottie Wilbekin scored 18 and Michael Frazier II added 17 as Florida extended its school-record winning streak to 19 games.
Henderson led the Rebels with 22 points, but all of them came in the first half. Jarvis Summers scored 20 and Anthony Perez added 10.
"We gave a winning effort," Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy said. "But we’ve got to make plays and we didn’t make plays."
Ole Miss (16-11, 7-7 Southeastern Conference) has lost four in a row and its chance at an NCAA tournament at-large bid looks extremely bleak.
The game was tied at 59 with eight minutes left, but Florida scored the next seven points to take control. Henderson missed all six of his shots in the second half.
The Gators (25-2, 14-0) could very well be the No. 1 team in the country when the new polls are released on Monday. The current No. 1 Syracuse lost on Wednesday to Boston College.
But Frazier and Florida coach Billy Donovan said that won’t mean much.
"This team understands that the whole is greater than its parts," Donovan said. "But we need to play better and I’m talking about that from an effort standpoint."
Ole Miss badly needed a quality win for its mediocre NCAA tournament resume and played like a desperate team for much of the afternoon.
But the Gators steadily put the Rebels away with quality offensive possessions late in the second half.
Florida had to survive Henderson’s impressive barrage in the first half just to have a chance.
It’s not the first time Henderson has had a big moments against the Gators. He scored 21 points against Florida last season in the SEC tournament championship -- adding a memorable Gator Chomp motion as the Rebels ended up winning 66-63.
And it was quickly apparent on Saturday that the 6-foot-2 senior was feeling good again. He shot 7 of 14 from the field -- including 5 of 11 from 3-point range -- as the two teams fought to an entertaining 42-all tie by halftime.
The Gators’ vaunted defense, which is easily the best statistically in the SEC, had few answers for Henderson early. He made several difficult shots with a hand in his face.
It didn’t last.
Henderson cooled off in the second half -- missing those tough looks that had gone in during the first half -- and Florida did enough offensively to win.
"We had a heightened sense of urgency to start the second half, especially on (Henderson)," Frazier said. "We did a better job of staying locked in on him and staying locked in as a whole."
The Rebels stayed in the game thanks to a big second half from Anthony Perez and Summers. Perez made a layup to tie it at 59.
But Florida responded quickly. Wilbekin stole the ball and passed down the court to Patric Young, who finished with a dunk. Casey Prather made a 10-foot jumper on the next possession and the Gators never trailed again.
Florida was relentlessly efficient down the stretch, scoring on nearly every possession in the final minutes.
Young added 12 points and five rebounds for the Gators. He made four straight crucial free throws in the final minutes to help Florida keep its lead.
Henderson finished 7 of 20 from the field, including 5 of 16 from 3-point range. He tied Pat Bradley’s SEC record by hitting a 3-pointer in a 60th consecutive game.
Kennedy said he hasn’t given up hope for the Rebels making second straight NCAA tournament. The Rebels had a similar February swoon last season before winning the SEC tournament and making the Big Dance for the first time since 2002.
"Based on what we’ve done right now, we’re not relevant to the NCAA tournament as far as the conversation is today," Kennedy said. "But let me point out that at this time last year, we weren’t relevant to the conversation either."
No. 3 Wichita State 83,
WICHITA, Kan. -- Tekele Cotton had 21 points, Darius Carter came off the bench to score 15 and No. 3 Wichita State pounded Drake 83-54 Saturday night.
Wichita State (29-0, 16-0 Missouri Valley Conference) is the first team to start 29-0 since Illinois in 2004-05 and is two wins away from a perfect regular season.
Fred VanVleet scored 15 for the Shockers, who cut down the nets after the game to celebrate their Missouri Valley championship.
Wichita State cruised despite leading scorer Cleanthony Early being held to a season-low three points and Ron Baker only scoring six, less than half his season average.
Daddy Ugbede scored 14 points, Jordan Daniels had 13 and Aaron Hawley 10 for Drake (14-14, 5-11), which had more turnovers (20) than field goals (18).
In the deciding portion of the game, only halftime provided the Bulldogs some respite.
Wichita State wrapped a 31-4 run around the break, an onslaught so complete that the Shockers completed the 14-1 portion to start the second half without Drake even attempting a field goal.
After trailing early, the Bulldogs held the Shockers scoreless for over 3 minutes, going on a 9-0 run capped by Hawley’s backdoor layup for a 15-14 lead with 9:18 remaining in the first half.
To make matters worse for Wichita State, Early was on the bench with two fouls and Baker soon joined him with his second.
But Wichita State started the game-turning run behind Carter, who scored four straight before the Shockers started a parade of baskets at the rim.
VanVleet and Cotton had layups. Cotton and Nick Wiggins had back-to-back slams. VanVleet’s 3-pointer helped Wichita State lead 31-18 at halftime.
The Shockers roll only gained momentum to start the second half.
After Drake’s Seth VanDeest made a free throw, Wichita State scored 14 straight.
Cotton and Carter converted three-point plays to get it started and Carter had another slam.
And Kadeem Coleby and VanVleet stuck in offensive rebounds, bringing roars from the crowd.
The Shockers led 45-19 with 16:35 remaining.
Hawley ended the run with a 3-pointer 15 seconds later, the Bulldogs’ first shot attempt of the half.
After that, the Shockers could sub liberally and soon start celebrating an outright Missouri Valley title, actually clinched earlier in the day when Indiana State lost.