FIRST WIN OVER DUKE IN 45 YEARS!
Are you kidding me? The Canes beat Duke for the first time in 45 years!
The Canes almost blew a 20-point lead before holding on for dear life in a 96-95 thriller. UM's Jack McClinton made a free throw with 1.6 seconds left to seal the game. Duke made a long three-pointer just before the buzzer to make the score closer than it really was.
The Canes struggle against a full-court press - they have all season. But why focus on the one negative on a night of so many positives?
Forward Dwayne Collins was brilliant with a career-high 26 points. He made just about everything he threw up - 12 of 14 from the field, mostly on dunks. He also grabbed 7 rebounds and was dominant inside.
McClinton had 22 points and was especially valuable down the stretch because he is one of the best free-throw shooters in the nation and made 6 of 7 to keep Duke down.
Brian Asbury came alive with 15 points off the bench, including 5 of 6 on free throws.
Point guard Lance Hurdle was solid with 13 points, including 4 of 4 on free throws and 4 of 7 from the field.
Center Anthony King mysteriously disappeared with 0 points and 1 rebound in 15 minutes. What happened there?
But hey, with the way Collins played, it was all good.
The Canes are now 18-7 overall and 5-6 in the ACC. They host Maryland on Saturday. After that, they play at Clemson and FSU and home games vs. Virginia and Boston College.
They likely have to go 3-2 down the stretch to earn an NCAA Tournament bid. A 2-3 stretch run and 1 or 2 wins in the ACC Tournament would likely get them there as well.