In the first 10 minutes, this game was a war. Songaila more or less gratuitously threw Jason Williams to the floor. Carlos Boozer ripped down a couple of eye-popping power rebounds and hit the floor for a loose ball. The beginning of this game, actually, reminded us a lot of the Duke-State game in Cameron a few years ago when the Pack nearly upset Duke and had a remarkable end-of-the-game comeback to put the game in overtime.
At the 10:48 mark, it was 24-17, and a TV timeout. At 10:45, Wake took a 30 second time out to hopefully stem Duke.
That's about when Duke started to take off. A couple of minutes later, Dunleavy made a steal, took it in for a udnke, which was followed in short order by a Boozer steal, and then a Williams pass to Boozer for a layup. Wake made a turnover the next trip down court.
It was an 11 point lead, and it got worse fast: Wake didn't hit a shot from the 11:31 mark until the 30 second mark. Duke got a number of steals and layups, and pretty much that was the ballgame. If that wasn't enough, Mike Dunleavy's 40 foot runner at the halftime buzzer made it clear Duke wasn't giving anyone anything.
Antwan Scott went up for a dunk at the 8:12 mark and was fouled by Horvath, which was a good play, actually. We saw somewhere earlier this season that Scott was shooting about 35% for the season when you set aside the dunks.
By the 7:51 mark, on a loose ball possession, Dunleavy and Hicks were tangled up in a loose ball situation, and Scott, always shaky on fundamentals, traveled at the other end. Hicks jumped up, screaming for a foul, which he didn't get. Incidentally, Wake got a huge advantage in fouls in this game, at 23-11. No doubt the famous Wake bias was at work (for the satire-impaired, that was a joke).
By the 5:30 mark, Duke was up 34-19, and Jason Williams got loose for a great backdoor play. Songaila was growing increasingly frustrated, and not long after that threw Williams to the ground again, this time on a pick. So: Songaila got half his fouls on stupid, easily avoidable plays.
Wake finally hit a shot with 30 seconds left, but it was too late. Dunleavy's remarkable long shot was just adding insult to injury.
After an impressive first half, though, Krzyzewski was less than overwhelmed at the beginning of the second, according to Mathew Lawrence of the radio crew. He kept telling his guys to maintain their defensive intensity, but after a half like that, maybe it's hard to stay at that level.
Still, in the second half, Duke exploited Wake's defense mercilessly, and forced Prosser to call a timeout at the 18:21 mark. That's pretty damn quick.
After the timeout was when Mike Dunleavy really started to go off, too. Don't get us wrong, he had an excellent first half, as did the rest of the team. But the man had steals, blocked shots, rebounds, assists, and played brilliantly without the ball. It was a tour de force for Dunleavy. At the 14:35 mark, he went after a long rebound, couldn't reach it, and tipped it to Williams. It doesn't sound impressive, but it was. That was shortly followed by a Williams steal and layup - and the trail guy? Dunleavy, of course.
He was so hot even the Wake fans were cheering him on to shoot, according to the Herald-Sun.
His game to an extent overshadowed a remarkable performance by Jason Williams, who hit 10-18 for 26 points, 8 assists, and 3 steals. One of the few criticisms of his game has been turnovers, but he only had 3 in this game.
Boozer, Jones, and Duhon all had solid games as well.
Really, it's hard to pick flaws in this performance. Not enough free throws? Maybe. Too many fouls? Possibly. But that's quibbling. The focus of the last several days, following hte Maryland game, has been communicating on the court, and that seems to have been well addressed. With 16 assists from the backcourt and 22 overall, that pretty much indicates solid communication. Duke has put the Maryland game behind them in one sense, and has really put it to use in another.