DURHAM — Rocket Watts scored 20 points and Julius Marble had a career-high 12 to help No. 8 Michigan State beat No. 6 Duke 75-69 on Tuesday night in the Champions Classic.
The Spartans (3-0) closed the first half with a 13-4 surge to take a 37-33 lead at halftime. They maintained control in the second half with a balanced offense to go with their aggressive defense and rebounding.
“They are able to play at a consistently higher level than us due to their depth right now,” Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said.
The Blue Devils (1-1) led 13-3 before struggling to make shots or get stops. Duke shot just 32% from the field and allowed five Spartans to score in double figures.
“At the end of the half, I thought we got a little fatigued, I guess tired, and they took that lead,” Krzyzewski said. “Then at the start of the second half, we didn’t meet their level of intensity like we should.”
The Blue Devils missed 14 of their first 15 3-pointers and finished 5 of 25 beyond the arc.
“The thing that we did not do was finish,” Krzyzewski said.
Aaron Henry had 14 points, five rebounds, five assists, three steals and three blocks for the Spartans.
“We rode him like a horse,” coach Tom Izzo.
Joey Hauser had 11 points and 10 rebounds, while Malik Hall added 10 points and 10 rebounds for Michigan State.
Matthew Hurt had 21 points and 13 rebounds for Duke, but freshman Jalen Johnson was limited to 11 points on 4-of-11 shooting after scoring 24 in his college debut. Jaemyn Brakefield scored 11 and Jordan Goldwire had 10 points for the Blue Devils.
The Spartans’ win improved Izzo’s coaching record to 3-12 against the Blue Devils.
“I’m going to smile and enjoy it because I haven’t done a very good job against Duke,” Izzo said. “It’s been one-sided, so this is one step in the right direction.”
It was also the Spartans’ first win at Duke, which didn’t have its raucous fans at Cameron Indoor Stadium due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I’m not going to put this as an asterisk,” Izzo said.
Duke next plays Friday when it hosts Bellarmine.
Providence 63, Davidson 62
ASHEVILLE — Nate Watson scored 22 points and Providence held on to defeat Davidson 63-62 in the consolation bracket of the Maui Invitational on Tuesday night.
The Friars led all the way, building a 19-point lead in the middle of the first half, but they couldn’t put the Wildcats away.
After Kellen Grady’s layup with 34 seconds left pulled Davidson within 63-62, two different Friars missed the front end of a one-and-one, giving Davidson two chances to pull out the win.
After missing a contest layup with three seconds left, a foul and a miss gave one last chance for a final desperation shot.
Jared Bynum added 14 points and David Duke 13 for Providence (2-1), which plays the winner of UNLV and Alabama for fifth place in the tournament that was moved to North Carolina because of coronavirus concerns. The Friars were just 2 of 16 from 3-point range.
Hyunjung Lee and Grady scored 17 points apiece for the Wildcats (1-2) with Grady grabbing seven rebounds. Davidson had eight 3-pointers.
NC A&T 70, Charleston Southern 63
CHARLESTON, S.C. — Fred Cleveland Jr. had 15 points off the bench to lift North Carolina A&T to a 70-63 win over Charleston Southern on Tuesday night.
Tyler Maye had 14 points for NC A&T (2-2). Tyrone Lyons added 12 points and three blocks, and Kameron Langley had 11 points, six assists and six steals.
Ja’Quavian Florence had 15 points for the Buccaneers (0-3). Melvin Edwards Jr. added 12 points and Malik Battle had 11 points.
East Carolina 91, North Carolina Wesleyan 62
GREENVILLE — Jayden Gardner was 11-for-12 shooting and had 27 points to lead East Carolina past Division III North Carolina Wesleyan 91-62 on Tuesday.
Brandon Suggs added 14 points for East Carolina (2-0), Tristen Newton 11 and Bitumba Baruti 10.
Damon McDowell had 26 points for the Battling Bishops (0-3). Isaiah Lewis added 14 points.
Winthrop 75, UNC Greensboro 67
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Chandler Vaudrin had 14 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, and Adonis Arms also scored 14 points to lift Winthrop to a 75-67 win over UNC Greensboro on Tuesday night.
Kelton Talford added 12 points, and Micheal Anumba had six rebounds for Winthrop (1-0).
Isaiah Miller had 19 points for the Spartans (1-1). Hayden Koval added 17 points and three blocks, and Kaleb Hunter grabbed 10 rebounds.