Duke wins battle; Big Ten wins the war
Nolan Smith added 17 points and Kyle Singler scored 15 for the Blue Devils (7-0). They shot 47 percent, turned 20 Michigan State turnovers into 28 points, used a 12-2 spurt midway through the second half to take a double-figure lead and held off the Spartans down the stretch by hitting 9 of 12 free throws in the final 1:15.
Korie Lucious scored 20 points and Draymond Green added 10 of his 16 in the final minute for Michigan State (5-2). The Spartans shot 49 percent, were held to one field goal during a critical 7-minute stretch that coincided with Duke’s run but otherwise hung tight with the reigning national champions.
The Spartans put a few of the Blue Devils’ impressive winning streaks to the test. But ultimately, Duke found a way to win its 17th straight game dating to last season’s national title run, claim its 23rd straight victory at Cameron Indoor Stadium and run its NCAA-best streak of nonconference wins at home to 81.
Mike Krzyzewski claimed the 875th victory of his Hall of Fame career to move one win behind Adolph Rupp, who’s in third place on the all-time list.
But for much of the way, little came easy for Duke. Michigan State closed to 69-64 on Durrell Summers’ dunk with 3˝ minutes left before Singler stuck back Irving’s miss. Mason Plumlee hit two free throws to push it to 73-64 with 2:22 left.
Last updated: 3:55 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012