UPSET: Canes Down Duke, 78-74
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – Leave it to the biggest player on Miami’s roster to put the Hurricanes on his back and carry them to their most impressive victory in quite a while.
Reggie Johnson – all 6-foot-10 and 284 pounds of him – scored five of his career-high 27 points in overtime of Miami’s 78-74 upset of No. 7 Duke on Sunday.
Johnson added a season-high 12 rebounds and was a handful all game for the Blue Devils to deal with. Miami outrebounded them 48-43 and outscored them 38-26 in the paint.
“I feel I had the hot hand the whole game,” Johnson said, adding that first-year coach Jim Larranaga “was trying to ride me a whole lot. My teammates found me in good positions – catch and score.”
Kenny Kadji added 15 points for the Hurricanes (14-7, 5-3 Atlantic Coast Conference), who blew a 16-point lead in the second half, then regrouped to claim their first big victory for their new coach.
“To come in here and play with the kind of poise we did, play the kind of defense we did – especially in the first half and in the overtime – was something that we can be very, very proud of,” Larranaga said.
That poise gave Miami its first victory at Cameron Indoor Stadium and just its second win over Duke since joining the ACC. The Hurricanes are on their first four-game winning streak since 2008 and have won three consecutive ACC road games for the first time.
Seth Curry scored 22 points and freshman Austin Rivers added 20 for the Blue Devils (19-4, 6-2), who appeared listless while falling into that deep deficit before waking up with about 16 minutes left.
Then, they missed all six of their free throws in overtime and wound up being beaten at home by a Florida-based conference rival for the second time this season.
“A Duke team should play with energy for 40 minutes, or 45,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said. “Go outside right now and you look at the banners – there are quite a few of them up there. They were not won without energy, without hunger, with no complacency, with people really wanting it.
“And we’ve wanted it a lot, and we’ve won a lot. We’re supposed to play hard and with energy all the time. Those are givens. Those should be givens.”
Mason Plumlee added 13 rebounds for Duke, which had its 45-game home winning streak snapped two weeks ago by No. 21 Florida State. The Blue Devils have lost two of three at Cameron and have dropped multiple home games for the first time since going 15-4 there in 2006-07.
“The biggest emphasis for us was to protect our home court,” guard Quinn Cook said. “We’ve got to get better.”
Still, the Blue Devils had plenty of chances in the extra session. They trailed 75-74 with Cook on the line, but he missed two free throws with 27.2 seconds left.
After Johnson missed two foul shots with 26.2 seconds left to give Duke another shot, Cook missed badly on a running jumper with about 15 seconds left. DeQuan Jones extended Miami’s lead to 77-74 with two foul shots with 12.9 seconds left.
Rivers and Ryan Kelly missed 3s in the final seconds and Johnson added a free throw with one-tenth of a second remaining to silence the subdued arena.
Johnson, a native of Winston-Salem, surpassed the 25 points he scored last season against Wake Forest.
“It’s big – my friends, my family were here,” Johnson said. “Growing up here, I know about Duke. I know about North Carolina. I know about N.C. State. So to come in here and get a win against Duke is real big-time.”
He scored the Hurricanes’ first four points in overtime before Malcolm Grant’s open-court layup put Miami up 75-69 with 2:10 left.
Durand Scott added 11 points on 3-of-12 shooting for the Hurricanes, who had a chance to win it in regulation.
Rivers tied it at 69 with one of two free throws with 21.5 seconds left. Miami had the ball last, but Johnson passed out of a double-team in the post to Scott, who couldn’t get a shot off before the buzzer.
Miami forced 14 turnovers and was cruising before going cold midway through the second half, managing only one field goal during the critical stretch that coincided with Duke’s rally.
Miami went up by 16 points three times, the last on Kadji’s open 3-pointer from the key that made it 53-37 with 14 1/2 minutes left. But a putback by Johnson was the Hurricanes’ only field goal for quite over the next 8 1/2 minutes.
Duke, which missed 15 of 18 shots during the stretch that put it in such a huge hole, got equally hot during the 16-2 run led by Curry that put the Blue Devils right back in it.
“For 24 minutes, I just think we were not very good at all,” Krzyzewski said. “We had no energy and they did. … Then in the last 16 minutes of regulation, I thought we played extremely well and gave ourselves an opportunity to win.”
Defeating Ranked Teams
The Canes defeated No. 5 Duke (96-93) on Feb. 20, 2008 at the BankUnited Center. Duke was ranked No. 4 in the Coaches Poll at that time.
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