Moving On To Presbyterian

There's no time to rest as Duke will face a second game in less than 24 hours on Saturday.

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski has already received a major scare en route to a major milestone this weekend, but he insists his team will be better for it.

Krzyzewski can match mentor Bob Knight atop the Division I men's career victory list Saturday when his sixth-ranked Blue Devils host Presbyterian.

The Basketball Hall of Famer began his 37th season as a head coach by improving his record to 901-284, but it wasn't easy in a 77-76 victory over Belmont on Friday. Krzyzewski matched the win total of Knight - his college coach at Army.

"I'm really proud of our guys, especially once the game pressure was on us," Krzyzewski said. "We grew up a lot tonight. You can't practice situations like that."

Duke extended the nation's longest home win streak to 37 games and its run at Cameron Indoor Stadium over non-conference foes to 87. The Blue Devils' last loss to a non-ACC team at home came Feb. 26, 2000, an 83-82 defeat to St. John's.

"I thought overall we played really well," Krzyzewski insisted. "I thought we played a little bit better than they did, to be quite frank."

Austin Rivers - one of three Blue Devils making his college debut - and Seth Curry both scored 16 points. Duke, with one senior on the roster, led by as many as 16 points but showed its youth with 19 turnovers as Belmont - which won 30 games a season ago - nearly pulled the upset.

"Our fans should understand that we played a really outstanding basketball team tonight, just in case they don't understand that," Krzyzewski said. "These guys are very, very good."

Junior forward Mason Plumlee had a strong all-around game with 16 points, 14 boards and six assists for the Blue Devils.

"It's great to start the season with a win, no matter how you get it," he said.

Presbyterian also opened at home Friday with a 103-73 rout of NAIA opponent Montreat. The 103 points were the most for the Blue Hens since a 111-51 victory over Carver Bible College on Feb. 16, 2008.

Al'Lonzo Coleman had a team-high 21 points in 15 minutes. No player for the Blue Hens logged more than 26 minutes as Presbyterian stayed relatively fresh for the second half of its back-to-back games.

Duke and Presbyterian have met once previously, an 80-49 home victory for the Blue Devils to open the 2008-09 season. Coleman, one of three current starters for the Blue Hens who also started that contest, had a team-high 13 points.

As the Blue Devils' lone senior, Miles Plumlee is the only Duke player to participate in that contest.

That gives the Blue Hens an advantage in terms of experience Saturday. The Blue Devils lost their top three scorers from last season, and know they have room for improvement.

"It's a big win for us, a big confidence boost," guard Andre Dawkins said after beating Belmont. "Now we have to turn around and move to the next game against Presbyterian tomorrow afternoon."


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