Blue Devils stay perfect
DURHAM, N.C. -- Seth Curry scored 12 of his season-high 31 points during the late run that helped No. 1 Duke pull away for a 90-77 victory over pesky Santa Clara on Saturday.
Mason Plumlee added 22 points and 13 rebounds for the Blue Devils (12-0), who needed a huge run late to overcome both a big game from Kevin Foster and a real scare from the Broncos (11-3).
Foster scored 18 of his 29 points in the first half, and his soaring baseline dunk put the Broncos up 45-41 with 16:30 left. But the Broncos managed just one field goal over the next 8 1/2 minutes.
Curry hit two 3-pointers and followed with three layups during the Blue Devils’ 26-5 run.
Ryan Kelly had 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Quinn Cook finished with 15 points for Duke, which is 12-0 for the 10th time under coach Mike Krzyzewski. The Blue Devils won their 101st straight nonconference game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Evan Roquemore added 17 points while Marc Trasolini and Raymond Cowels III had 10 apiece for Santa Clara, which was playing the No. 1 team for just the second time since 1981 and fell to 0-12 all-time against top-ranked opponents.
No. 2 MICHIGAN 88,
CENTRAL MICHIGAN 73
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Trey Burke had 22 points and 10 assists as Michigan finished its non-conference schedule with a victory over Central Michigan.
Michigan played without junior Tim Hardaway Jr. who missed the first game of his career with an ankle injury. That meant the Wolverines started three freshmen -- Nik Stauskas, Glenn Robinson III and Caris LeVert -- along with Burke and Jordan Morgan.
Robinson had 20 points, while Stauskas finished with 19 for Michigan (13-0), which is off to the second-best start in school history. The 1985-86 Wolverines team, led by Gary Grant, Roy Tarpley and Glen Rice, started the season 16-0 on its way to a Big Ten championship.
Central Michigan (7-6) was hoping to match the success of its football team, which won the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl on Wednesday, but never recovered from falling behind by seven points in the first three minutes.
No. 4 LOUISVILLE 80,
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Russ Smith scored 21 points and Chane Behanan had 20 and Louisville ended a four-game losing streak to rival Kentucky.
Peyton Siva added 19 points as the Cardinals (12-1) won a hard-fought Battle of the Bluegrass. Though the Cardinals trail the series 30-15, their victory followed last spring’s 69-61 national semifinal loss to the Wildcats, who went on to win their eighth national championship.
The Wildcats (8-4) trailed 51-34 but outscored the Cardinals 28-14 to get within 65-62 before Smith’s two baskets keyed an 8-5 run to give Louisville some space.
Behanan sealed Louisville’s win with late two dunks, the final one following his steal of a pass by Archie Goodwin with 18 seconds remaining.
Goodwin scored 19 of his 22 points in the second half for Kentucky and Ryan Harrow added 17 points.
Poor foul shooting doomed the Wildcats’ comeback. They shot just 11 of 23 (48 percent) from the line, matching their percentage from the field.
No. 6 KANSAS 89,
LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Travis Releford scored 19 points and Kansas hit a scorching 13 of its first 18 3-point attempts, rolling to a victory over American.
Kansas (11-1) took command with a 21-4 spree in the opening minutes and wound up with six players scoring at least nine points against the outmanned Eagles (4-9). Releford was 7 for 8 from the floor, including 5 of 6 3-pointers. Elijah Johnson had 12 points and was 4 for 5 from behind the arc as the Jayhawks finished with 15-for-24 3-point shooting.
Freshman Perry Ellis had 11 points and 10 rebounds for his first double-double.
Stephen Lumpkins had 16 points and six rebounds for the Eagles.
No. 9 SYRACUSE 57,
ALCORN STATE 36
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- C.J. Fair scored 13 points, Trevor Cooney added 12, all in the second half to key a late surge, and Syracuse beat Alcorn State in the final game of the Gotham Classic.
It was the 901st win for Orange coach Jim Boeheim, one behind Bob Knight for second place all-time among Division I men’s coaches. Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski leads with 939 wins.
Syracuse (11-1), coming off an 83-79 loss to Temple at Madison Square Garden a week ago, increased its home winning streak to 31 games, longest in the nation. Alcorn State (2-13), which was late arriving because of the weather, dropped to 0-9 on the road in losing its ninth straight.
Marquiz Baker, who had averaged 25.7 in three games since returning from a knee injury that had sidelined him since November of 2011, finished with 15 points to lead the Braves.
No. 10 OHIO ST. 87,
CHICAGO ST. 44
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Deshaun Thomas scored 17 points and Ohio State regained its shooting touch in its final tuneup before beginning Big Ten play.
LaQuinton Ross added 15 points, Lenzelle Smith Jr. had 13, Amedeo Della Valle had career-high 11 and Aaron Craft scored 10 for the Buckeyes (10-2), who complete an eight-game homestand when they host Nebraska in the conference opener on Wednesday.
The Buckeyes hit 33 of 58 shots from the field (57 percent).
Quinton Pippen, a nephew of ex-Chicago Bulls star Scottie Pippen, had 12 points for Chicago State (3-12), which fell to 0-11 away from home with its fourth straight defeat.
Tuckeyes opened the second half by making their first four attempts from the field. A 10-2 blitz at the outset of the second half swelled the lead to 47-26. The Cougars never got closer than 17 points again.
No. 12 ILLINOIS 81, AUBURN 79
CHICAGO (AP) -- Tracy Abrams scored a career-high 27 points for Illinois.
The Illini (13-1) saw an 11-point lead shrink to one in the closing minutes but they prevailed after falling to Missouri in the Braggin’ Rights game a week earlier -- their first loss under coach John Groce.
Frankie Sullivan buried a 3 for Auburn (5-7) to make it 68-67 with 4:29 remaining. Illinois then hit 13 of 18 free throws the rest of the way for a rare win at the United Center, where they had dropped three straight and five of six after winning 18 in a row.
Abrams, a sophomore guard, was 6 of 11 from the field and 13 of 15 from the free throw line while eclipsing his previous high by five points.
Brandon Paul finished with 13 points for Illinois but was just 3 of 12 from the field and missed all five 3-point attempts.
Sullivan led Auburn with 21 points. Rob Chubb scored 13, and Allen Payne chipped in with 10 points and 10 rebounds, but the Tigers dropped their second straight.
No. 14 FLORIDA 78, AIR FORCE 61
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Kenny Boynton snapped a shooting slump with three 3-pointers in the second half when Florida pulled away.
Boynton had made only 4 of 32 from 3-point range over the previous five games, but he hit three in a span of 8 minutes to break the game open. The Gators used their superior size and smothering defense to grind down the Falcons, who shot 48 percent in the first half and 33 percent in the second half.
Florida (9-2) won for only the second time in the past four games. Air Force (8-3) fell to 2-77 against ranked teams.
Boynton, who ranks third in career 3-pointers made at Florida with 282, went 3 for 7 from long range and scored 14 points.
Erik Murphy of Florida scored 21 points, had seven rebounds and added four assists while missing only two shots in 29 minutes. He was chosen the game’s MVP.
The Falcons matched the second-best start in school history in their first 10 games but hadn’t faced a team of Florida’s caliber. Air Force’s Michael Lyons was held to 11 points, nine below his average, and he shot only 3 for 14.
No. 16 CREIGHTON 87, EVANSVILLE 70
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- Doug McDermott scored 14 of his 29 points in a 6 1/2-minute stretch of the second half when Creighton pulled away from Evansville.
Gregory Echenique had 13 points and 13 rebounds, Jahenns Manigat added 13 points, and Avery Dingman had 11 for the Bluejays (12-1), who won their Missouri Valley Conference opener.
McDermott, the Bluejays’ returning All-American, also had 10 rebounds for his second double-double of the season.
Colt Ryan, who scored an arena-record 43 points in his last visit, matched his season high with 25 for the Purple Aces (7-6, 0-1). Troy Taylor added 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists for Evansville, which has lost 14 straight in Omaha since 1999.
Evansville cut a 17-point deficit to seven early in the second half. McDermott wasn’t much of a factor as he went scoreless during a span of 10:32 over the halves.
No. 18 BUTLER 68, VANDERBILT 49
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Rotnei Clarke hit six 3-pointers and finished with 22 points and the Butler Bulldogs shook off a sluggish start and routed Vanderbilt for their seventh straight victory.
The Bulldogs (10-2) missed their first seven 3-pointers and led only 25-22 at halftime before taking control of the game with a 14-3 run to open the second half.
Clarke, who missed his first six shots, had another memorable game in Memorial Gym. He scored 36 points in January 2011 playing for Arkansas, hitting 6-of-8 beyond the arc in that game.
This time around, the senior guard hit 6-of-9 from 3-point range before Butler coach Brad Stevens starting pulling his starters. Kellen Dunham added 12 points.
Kyle Fuller led Vanderbilt with 10 points. Kedren Johnson finished with nine, well below his average of 17.8 points and didn’t score until nearly three minutes into the second half.
NORTH CAROLINA 79, No. 20 UNLV 73
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) -- P.J. Hairston scored 15 points in his first career start for North Carolina.
Dexter Strickland added a season-high 16 points for the Tar Heels (10-3), who led by 15 points in the first half and by nine at the break. But UNC had to turn away a second-half surge by the Runnin’ Rebels (11-2) to earn the program’s 63rd straight home win against nonconference opponents.
Freshman Anthony Bennett had 15 points and 13 rebounds for UNLV, which led by a point briefly in the second half but spent most of the game in catch-up mode. Katin Reinhardt and Anthony Marshall each added 15 points for the Runnin’ Rebels, who also got Mike Moser back from an elbow injury after a four-game absence.
Hairston started in place of Reggie Bullock, who sat out with a mild concussion suffered in Thursday’s practice, and finished 5 for 10 from the field and hit two 3-pointers. He made two free throws with 28.5 seconds left after the Runnin’ Rebels had closed within 76-73.
No. 23 NORTH CAROLINA ST. 84, W. MICHIGAN 68
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- C.J. Leslie scored 19 points to lead North Carolina State.
Richard Howell added 18 points on 8-of-8 shooting for the Wolfpack (10-2), who won their sixth consecutive game.
N.C. State shot 55 percent from the field, padding its NCAA-leading field goal percentage.
T.J. Warren scored 15 points, Scott Wood had 11 and Lorenzo Brown added 10 for the Wolfpack.
Nate Hutcheson scored 16 points to lead the Broncos (8-5). Shayne Whittington added 14 points and Darius Paul had 12 for Western Michigan.
No. 25 KANSAS STATE 52, MISSOURI-KANSAS CITY 44
MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) -- Rodney McGruder scored 17 points, Thomas Gipson had 13 points and six rebounds and Kansas State struggled to a victory over Missouri-Kansas City.
Playing without guards Angel Rodriguez and Martavious Irving due to injuries, the Wildcats (10-2) shot just 32 percent from the field and went 2 of 10 from beyond the arc in their first game since beating then-No. 8 Florida on a neutral floor.
They certainly looked nothing like the team that beat the Gators last weekend.
Fred Chatmon had nine points and 16 rebounds for the ‘Roos (4-9), who were within 40-36 with 3:11 remaining before Nino Williams’ three-point play gave the Wildcats some breathing room.
McGruder’s soft floater in the lane moments later helped put the game away.
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