Colson leads Notre Dame past No. 9 Duke, 95-91
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Bonzie Colson hit a shot against Duke, drew a foul and stared down those noisy Cameron Crazies.
By the end of his latest big game, the Notre Dame big man shut them up.
Colson scored a career-high 31 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and the Fighting Irish upset No. 9 Duke 95-91 on Saturday.
“After playing here, I feel like we can play anywhere,” Colson said. “This is the craziest atmosphere in college basketball. We try to find a chip on our shoulders coming into every game, and found it tonight.”
Demetrius Jackson added 24 points and Steve Vasturia finished with 22 to help the Fighting Irish (12-5, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) win their second straight and beat the Blue Devils for the fourth time in five tries. This was their first win at Cameron Indoor Stadium, where they lost by 30 last year.
Colson, a sophomore, finished 12 of 19 from the field. He’s scored 17 or more points four times in his career — and two of those have come against Duke. He matched a then-career-high with 17 last year in the Irish’s 10-point victory over the Blue Devils in the ACC Tournament semifinals.
“He gets pretty fired up when he does play them,” coach Mike Brey said. “Bonzie’s a big game guy. He loves a big game, and I thought he helped his teammates get confident.”
Freshman Luke Kennard had a season-best 30 points and Brandon Ingram added 25 for the Blue Devils (14-4, 3-2), who have lost two straight for the first time this season.
Grayson Allen finished with 18 points, and he put Duke up 89-88 with two free throws with 47.2 seconds left. Colson then converted a key three-point play with 35.8 seconds remaining to give Notre Dame the lead for good.
Matt Jones missed a 3-pointer that would have tied it with about 20 seconds left and Jackson made it 93-89 with two free throws with 12.8 seconds remaining.
Duke gave itself a last-gasp chance after Marshall Plumlee dunked to make it a two-point game Jackson missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 4 seconds left. But Zach Auguste grabbed the rebound, then hit two free throws with 1.7 seconds left to ice it.
Notre Dame outrebounded the Blue Devils 38-33, and finished with 18 second-chance points to Duke’s four.
“Any stop is a big stop. When the ball is missed, get it, because there’s a good chance they’ll score if they get it,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said, referring to that discrepancy in second-chance scoring as “the story of the game.”
This was a matchup of two of Division I’s most efficient offenses, with the Irish ranking second and the Blue Devils fourth in Ken Pomery’s adjusted offensive efficiency ratings. Notre Dame shot 50 percent — almost exactly what they arrived shooting as a team — while Duke finished at almost 52 percent. “We executed on offense, but defensively, we just didn’t execute,” Kennard said. “We didn’t keep the ball out of the paint. We didn’t rebound very well. Defensively, we’ve just got to pick it up a little bit.”
HE SAID IT
“It’s mid-January. The Dow Jones ain’t good, but ours is up, baby” — Brey, on Notre Dame’s resume and position in the ACC standings.
Notre Dame: Colson entered having made two 3-pointers all season, none since November. He hit two in a five-possession span early in the second half. ... Brey is the only one of Krzyzewski’s former assistants to beat him. He’s done it three times in the last 12 months.
Duke: This was Duke’s first home loss in just over a year, since Miami’s win here on Jan. 13, 2015. ... The Blue Devils lost for the first time this season when scoring at least 79 points. They were 14-0 when scoring that many points, and 0-3 when failing to reach the 79-point mark.
Notre Dame hosts Virginia Tech on Wednesday night.
Duke hosts Syracuse on Monday night.
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