On Saturday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium, the Duke Blue Devils (10-8, 8-6 ACC) came out on the winning end against the #7 Virginia Cavaliers (15-5, 11-3 ACC) by a final score of 66-65..
Duke’s Matthew Hurt and Jeremy Roach started the game by knocking down three pointers, and Sam Hauser responded with 5 straight points a few minutes later. Matthew Hurt and Sam Hauser guarded each other all game in a fantastic matchup, and the two players finished with 22 and 19 points respectively as go-to scorers for their teams.
Early on, the Hoss were 10-14 (71.4%) from the field while the Blue Devils were 7-11 (63.6%) as UVA led 25-20, but a 9-0 run from Duke put them up 29-25. Duke switched on all screens which slowed the UVA offense for stretches of time, but Jay Huff also frequently took advantage of his matchup when a shorter player switched onto him. Huff finished with an impressive 20 points. Duke led 39-36 at halftime after a fast paced and hot shooting first half for both teams.
At the start of the second half, Jay Huff scored the first six points by either team. Sam Hauser buried a transition 3 to put the Hoos ahead 45-42, but Matthew Hurt responded with a 3 of his own. Hurt finished an impressive 8-13 from the floor and has been on fire in his past several games.
From there, the game became closer than ever. Each time the Cavaliers made a shot, the Blue Devils responded with one of their own. A Jordan Goldwire steal led to a DJ Steward triple with 6 minutes remaining to tie the score at 56. Goldwire had 4 steals and 4 assists off the bench for Duke and was a disruptive presence on the defensive end.
Late in the game, DJ Steward and Jaemyn Brakefield had nice plays to put Duke up 66-65. Although there were still two minutes left, this ended up being the final score. The final two possessions for the Hoos were difficult to watch. The second to last drive featured a stagnant offense until the final few seconds of the shot clock and two off balance looks.
On the final possession, Kihei Clark fumbled the ball and then put up an off-balance shot as the clock expired, and the Blue Devils survived with a one point victory.
In this game, Reece Beekman finished 0 points and Trey Murphy had only 4, and the two starters combined for just 3 shots. Similarly, Casey Morsell had the only 7 points off the bench, so the scoring load came from Jay Huff (20), Sam Hauser (19), and Kihei Clark (15). The lack of balanced scoring hurt the Hoos because they did not have a lot of great options at the end.
After a rough two loss week, the Cavaliers will look to get back on track against NC State at home on Wednesday.