College basketball roundup: Williams’ 28 leads Duke over Syracuse

Duke guard Jeremy Roach drives past Syracuse guard Buddy Boeheim during the Blue Devils' win Saturday at Syracuse. (Adrian Kraus / AP Photo)

SYRACUSE, N.Y.— With Syracuse’s big man out for the season, the Orange again were no match for No. 7 Duke.

Mark Williams scored a career-high 28 points and pulled down 12 rebounds, Paolo Banchero had 21 points and dished out nine assists with one turnover in the heart of the Syracuse zone defense, and AJ Griffin added 20 points as the Blue Devils raced to a commanding early lead and beat Syracuse 97-72 on Saturday night.

“I thought our offense was like amazing in the first 17 minutes. We played very well in the second half,” Krzyzewski said. “They scored the last 11 points of the first half and anything can happen then.”

It didn’t. With 6-foot-11 center Jesse Edwards watching with a broken wrist, the Blue Devils had their way again with Syracuse, which they defeated 79-59 three weeks ago at home.

“Obviously, we performed very well on the offensive end,” Williams said. “I think we were really locked in on the defensive end, too. We were moving the ball. We were getting really good shots, and defensively we just communicated well, moving, playing great defense.”

Duke had a season-high 26 assists on 35 baskets, one more assist than the last time the teams met.

“Jesse is a difference-maker for this team. It’s been too hard to overcome,” Orange coach Jim Boeheim said. “We can’t handle Duke. It’s pretty simple.”

It was the final regular season meeting between the two winningest coaches in Division I history — Krzyzewski (1,195), who’s retiring after the season, and Jim Boeheim (997). It was Krzyzewski’s 200th road win in the Atlantic Coast Conference, extending his record.

Duke (25-4, 15-3 ACC) is closing in on its first ACC regular season championship since 2010. The Blue Devils were a game ahead of Notre Dame, which beat Georgia Tech on Saturday night. The Blue Devils have a seven-game road winning streak, the longest active one by a Power 5 team.

Banchero had four 3s and Griffin had 6 on 17 attempts, and Duke finished 15 of 32 from deep. Williams finished 11 of 14 from the floor and had 12 rebounds.

“Paolo, it was one of his best games,” Krzyzewski said. “And Mark was fantastic. His ability to catch and finish and also get eight offensive rebounds was huge. I’m obviously very pleased.”

Banchero scored a season-low eight points on 2-of-13 shooting in a four-point win at Virginia on Wednesday night and entered the game 5 of 17 from behind the arc in the previous seven games.

“Just having fun, really,” Banchero said. “I felt like the past few weeks I had been putting some unnecessary pressure on myself. Just overthinking, especially on offense. That overthinking and overanalyzing really affected my game. So it was just amazing. When I play free and play fun, I always play better.”

Buddy Boeheim led Syracuse (15-14, 9-9) with 23 points, Joe Girard had 18 and freshman Benny Williams a season-high 14. Bourama Sidibe added 11 points.

“It’s tough,” Buddy said.

Duke raced to a 14-0 lead, hitting its first four shots and two free throws while the Orange went 0-7 and 0-3 from beyond the arc. With 11:47 left in the opening half, Duke was 11 of 12 from the floor, including 6 for 7 on 3s. Two 3s by Banchero, two more by Griffin and a dunk by Williams put the Blue Devils up 31-9 as the big Carrier Dome crowd had little to cheer.

The lead ballooned to 48-18 on a corner 3 by Banchero with 5:02 left before Buddy Boeheim hit a pair of 3s and scored 10 points to narrow the lead to 51-34 at halftime.

Banchero had 18 points and Griffin 14 in the opening half, combining to hit 8 of 11 3-pointers. The Blue Devils shot 18 of 30 (60%) and 10 of 17 (58.8%) from behind the arc in the period.

Jimmy Boeheim, who had scored 15 points in the first half of each of Syracuse’s previous two games, missed the three shots he attempted and did not score in 21 minutes. Cole Swider, who was averaging 13.3, finished with two points and took just four shots.

Syracuse closed to 73-57 on a 3-pointer by Williams midway through the second half, but got no closer.

UNC Asheville 98, Presbyterian 96 (3OT)

ASHEVILLE — LJ Thorpe tied his season high with 28 points — including the go-ahead jumper with 1:27 left — as UNC Asheville narrowly beat Presbyterian 98-96 in triple overtime on Saturday.

Tajion Jones had 16 points for UNC Asheville (16-13, 8-8 Big South Conference). Silas Mason added 16 points. Jamon Battle had 14 points.

Coty Jude scored 10 of his 13 point after regulation.

The Bulldogs forced a season-high 25 turnovers.

Rayshon Harrison had 23 points for the Blue Hose (12-19, 4-12). Terrell Ard, Jr. added 14 points. Marquis Barnett had 14 points.

The Bulldogs also defeated Presbyterian 68-67 on Jan. 29.

Davidson 66, Fordham 45

DAVIDSON — Luka Brajkovic recorded 15 points and 11 rebounds to lift Davidson to a 66-45 win over Fordham on Saturday.

Sam Mennenga had 17 points and nine rebounds for Davidson (24-4, 14-2 Atlantic 10 Conference), which won its fourth consecutive game. Michael Jones added 12 points. Hyunjung Lee had 10 points.

The Rams’ 24.5 field goal percentage represented the worst mark by a Davidson opponent this season. Additionally, the Wildcats forced a season-high 21 turnovers.

Chuba Ohams had 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Rams (13-14, 6-9). Antrell Charlton added seven rebounds.

The Wildcats improve to 2-0 against the Rams for the season. Davidson defeated Fordham 69-66 on Jan. 22.

High Point 88, Hampton 77

HIGH POINT — Zach Austin had 21 points and 10 rebounds as High Point got past Hampton 88-77 on Saturday.

Bryant Randleman added 20 points for the Panthers. Randleman also had six rebounds.

John-Michael Wright had 14 points for High Point (13-17, 7-9 Big South Conference). Alex Holt added 11 points.

Najee Garvin had 19 points and 15 rebounds for the Pirates (9-18, 5-11). Russell Dean added 15 points and 11 assists. Raymond Bethea Jr. and Rio Haskett both had 13 points.

The Panthers evened the season series against the Pirates. Hampton defeated High Point 68-64 on Jan. 22.

East Carolina 64, Tulsa 59

GREENVILLE — Tristen Newton had 27 points as East Carolina narrowly beat Tulsa 64-59 on Saturday.

Players were ejected after flagrant fouls following the clinching free throws by Alexis Reyes at the end of the game.

Vance Jackson had 12 points for East Carolina (15-13, 6-10 American Athletic Conference). Ludgy Debaut added three assists.

The Pirates forced a season-high 20 turnovers.

Darien Jackson had 17 points for the Golden Hurricane (9-18, 3-13). Jeriah Horne added 14 points. Curtis Haywood II had six rebounds.

The Pirates improve to 2-0 against the Golden Hurricane this season. East Carolina defeated Tulsa 73-71 on Feb. 8.

Elon 67, Northeastern 54

BOSTON — Hunter McIntosh had 21 points as Elon beat Northeastern 67-54 on Saturday.

Darius Burford had 15 points for Elon (10-21, 7-11 Colonial Athletic Association). Michael Graham added 10 points and 10 rebounds. Zac Ervin had eight rebounds.

Jason Strong had 14 points for the Huskies (8-21, 2-16). Jahmyl Telfort added 13 points. Nikola Djogo had eight rebounds.

The Phoenix improved to 2-0 against the Huskies this season. Elon defeated Northeastern 79-62 on Dec. 29.

Radford 62, NC A&T 53

GREENSBORO — Rashun Williams registered 15 points as Radford beat North Carolina A&T 62-53 on Saturday.

Josiah Jeffers had 12 points for Radford (11-17, 7-9 Big South Conference). Chyree Walker added 13 rebounds.

Marcus Watson had 15 points and seven rebounds for the Aggies (11-19, 6-10), who have now lost four straight games. Tyler Maye added 10 points. Kameron Langley had six rebounds.

The Highlanders leveled the season series against the Aggies. North Carolina A&T defeated Radford 73-72 on Jan. 8.

Howard 77, NC Central 67

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Elijah Hawkins registered 17 points as Howard topped North Carolina Central 77-67 on Saturday.

Kyle Foster had 15 points and six rebounds for Howard (15-11, 8-4 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference). Randall Brumant added 11 points. Khalil Robinson also had 11 points.

Eric Boone tied a career high with 29 points for the Eagles (14-13, 8-4). Kris Monroe added 13 points and nine rebounds. Marque Maultsby had 10 points.

The Bison improve to 2-0 against the Eagles this season. Howard defeated North Carolina Central 75-74 on Jan. 29.

South Carolina Upstate 72, Gardner-Webb 70

SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Jordan Gainey had 20 points as South Carolina Upstate edged past Gardner-Webb 72-70 on Saturday.

Bryson Mozone had 16 points and nine rebounds for South Carolina Upstate (13-15, 10-6 Big South Conference). Josh Aldrich added 11 points and three blocks. Dalvin White had 10 points.

D’Maurian Williams had 24 points for the Runnin’ Bulldogs (17-12, 11-5). Lance Terry added 17 points. Ludovic Dufeal had 10 rebounds.

Longwood 60, Campbell 55

BUIES CREEK — DeShaun Wade had 20 points as Longwood narrowly defeated Campbell 60-55 on Saturday.

Wade shot 6 for 9 from deep.

Justin Hill had 16 points and nine rebounds for Longwood (23-6, 15-1 Big South Conference), which won its fifth straight game. Isaiah Wilkins added 8 points and 10 rebounds for the Big South North Division champions.

Messiah Thompson had 16 points for the Fighting Camels (15-12, 8-8). Cedric Henderson Jr. added 14 points. Jesus Carralero had eight rebounds and three blocks.

The Lancers improved to 2-0 against the Fighting Camels on the season. Longwood defeated Campbell 72-64 on Jan. 19.

Forrest scores 14 to carry FAU past Charlotte 74-69

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Michael Forrest scored 14 points as Florida Atlantic edged Charlotte 74-69 on Saturday.

Alijah Martin had 13 points and seven rebounds for Florida Atlantic (16-13, 9-7 Conference USA), which ended its four-game losing streak.

Jahmir Young had 26 points for the 49ers (15-13, 8-8). Clyde Trapp Jr. added 13 points. Jackson Threadgill had 10 points.

The Owls improved to 2-0 against the 49ers this season. Florida Atlantic defeated Charlotte 96-67 on Jan. 17.