Seniors Carry Duke to 29 Point Win

It wasn't the same kind of mauling that Seton Hall faced. In fact Davidson was in the game for much of the 40 minute time period. Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Blue Devil captain J.J. Redick was hunting his shot, while fellow captain Shelden Williams had his first big performance of the year as top ranked Duke methodically pushed past Davidson by 29 on Saturday afternoon.

Redick continued his climb up the all-time Duke scoring list with a game high 29 points on 10-of-18 shooting including 4-of-6 from beyond the three point line as Duke won its third straight to open the season.

"I just had an aggressive mindset. We ran some good stuff for me today, and I made some moves off the dribble, : said the Duke senior. "Then there were some times when my teammates found me open for threes. Overall, it was a good offensive day for me."

It was the 89th time in his career, and 33rd consecutive time that Redick has reached double figures in scoring. He has scored 20 or more points 43 times in his three plus seasons in Durham. His Saturday performance increased his career total to 1,871, and he continues to rank 15th on Duke's career scoring chart ... Redick is 13 points shy of Jeff Mullins, who scored 1,884 from 1962-64.

Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Redick wasn't the only Duke captain looking to have a big game on Saturday. Shelden Williams, who had been relatively quiet through the first two games of the season missed a triple-double by one blocked shot. It was the 39th double-double of his career – the most of any active ACC player. Williams finished with 20 points, 10 rebounds and nine blocks, meaning Davidson had surrendered nearly 60 percent of the points to a pair of Blue Devils.

"We have a lot of weapons on the team, and for most of the season, we're going to rely on the top two guys, me and J.J. [Redick].," said Williams of he and his fellow captain's performance. "But we know if we're not having a good night, we can always rely on our other players to help us out on the offensive end of the court."

Another senior, Lee Melchionni, was the only other Duke player to hit double-figure scoring, hitting for 16 points on 5-of-13 shooting. Classmate Sean Dockery handed out six assists against just one turnover, to improve his assist to turnover ratio to a staggering 15/1 through three games.

The heralded freshman class of Josh McRoberts, Greg Paulus, Eric Boateng, Martynas Pocius, and Jamal Boykin combined for 10 points on the night with Paulus hitting a pair of three pointers and McRoberts converting a pair of field goals. Paulus added a pair of assists with no turnovers while McRoberts added three rebounds and a block for the night.

Both the Wildcats and Blue Devils struggled to find the range offensively throughout most of the first half, and with just over four minutes remaining it was a tight game at 25-20. However a five point surge, all scored by Redick, would push the lead to double figures for the final time at 30-20.

From there Williams would convert a free throw before Redick knocked down a contested jumper to make it 33-20. With Duke leading 38-26, Redick knocked down a long three pointer despite two defenders draped all over him at the buzzer to make it a 15 point game at intermission.

Duke's largest lead of the game would be it's final lead as Melchionni drilled a long three with the shot clock expiring at the 12 second mark of the second half to produce the final margin. The Wildcats had two chances in the final time, but both attempts rimmed out.

Sophomore DeMarcus Nelson added five points, four rebounds, two assists, a block, and a steal for the Devils in 26 minutes of action.

Duke now heads to New York for the semifinals of the NIT Season Tip Off against Drexel.

The Devils Den Top Stories