Miami Takes Down Duke on Senior Day, 55-50
|Season Stats||Audio Highlights|
|ACC Stats||Full Broadcast|
|Jim Larrañaga||Bruce Brown|
|Mike Krzyzewski||Davon Reed|
|SCORE BY HALF|
|Jackson / Kennard||16||Giles||8|
|Jackson / Jones||4||Bolden||3|
|Brown||4||Brown / Izundu||2|
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – One thing is clear about Bruce Brown. The Miami freshman does not shy away from the big stage on his home court.
In front of a nationally-televised audience and a sellout crowd at the Watsco Center, Brown led the Hurricanes to a 55-50 victory over No. 10/11 Duke Saturday afternoon as he scored a game-high 25 points.
“He’s (Bruce Brown) not caught up in hype,” head coach Jim Larrañaga said. “What he is all about is doing the best he can do on the court and off the court. People who meet him embrace him, because he smiles. He’s happy and that’s the way his teammates feel about him.”
The Boston native connected on 11-of-18 shots from the field, pulled down four rebounds, had a pair of steals and had two blocks to help propel the Hurricanes to their fourth straight win and their 14th win at home this season.
“Honestly I think I’ve been playing in big time games my whole life, whether it’s AAU or high school,” Brown said. “I play the same way I play every game.”
Brown’s 25-point effort marked the second time this season he has surpassed 20 points. The first came against North Carolina as he poured in a career-high 30 points back on Jan. 28.
“He’s (Bruce Brown) an outstanding player,” Krzyzewski said. “Our defense was not bad, he made tough plays to score.”
During the Hurricanes’ four-game winning streak, Miami has held each of its opponents to under 70 points, including Duke, which came into the game averaging 81.7 points per contest. Duke’s 50-point output was its lowest scoring total of the year.
“They’re finding a way to overcome whatever the obstacles are and play at a high level, especially at the defensive end of the floor and rebounding,” Larrañaga said. “I thought our team defense was really really good today.”
With the win, Larrañaga continued his success against Duke as he improved to 5-3 against the Blue Devils. Prior to Coach L’s arrival, the Canes were 2-15 against Duke. The win also handed the Hurricanes their 20th win on the year.
Prior to the game, Miami honored seniors Davon Reed and Kamari Murphy. Reed finished with nine points and pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds, while Murphy added seven points and recorded six rebounds.
“For me personally, to go out on senior day with a win was just an amazing feeling,” Reed said. “I’m just at a loss for words. I’m thankful that Bruce (Brown) came out and just had a lights out game and everybody did their part.”
The Hurricanes came out of the gate on a high note as they opened a five-point advantage at 7-2. Brown led the way for Miami has he scored seven straight points for the Hurricanes. Duke responded with an 11-5 run to take a 13-12 advantage with 10:12 to go in the first half.
Neither team would lead by more than three points over the final 10 minutes of the first half. The final 10 minutes of the first half also would feature five lead changes.
The Hurricanes took a 22-21 lead into the locker room thanks to a breakaway layup by Ja’Quan Newton. Duke’s 21 points were tied for a season low in the first half.
Much like the start of the game, Miami came out of the locker room on fire to start a half as it went on a 10-2 run to take a 32-23 lead with 15:42 to go.
The Blue Devils would eventually claw back to tie the game at 43 apiece with 4:40 to go, but the Hurricanes responded on the following possession as Reed split two defenders for an and-one layup to give Miami a 46-43 lead.
Miami would not trail for the remainder of the game as the Hurricanes held the Blue Devils to just a pair of field goals over the final four minutes. Duke’s 29 points in the second half were a season low.
Miami travels to Virginia Tech for its Big Monday matchup with the Hokies. Tipoff is set for 9 p.m. and can be seen on ESPN2.
Miami’s starters for the fourth-straight game were Bruce Brown, Davon Reed, Anthony Lawrence Jr., Kamari Murphy and Ebuka Izundu. Miami is now 4-0 with those players in the starting lineup.
Miami is now 5-3 overall against Duke in Coach Larrañaga’s six seasons at Miami, including a 3-1 mark at home.
Coach L is 608-399 in 33 years as a head coach, 138-65 at Miami and 64-60 in ACC action.
With the win, Miami is 4-1 overall and 2-0 at home against Duke when the Blue Devils are ranked in the AP top 10. The Canes also improve to 6-9 overall and 4-4 at home against top-10 teams under Coach L.
With the win, Miami is 11-22 under Coach Larrañaga when entering a game as the underdog against an AP top-25 ranked team. The underdog Canes are 6-11 when the opponent is in the AP top 10, and 3-4 when the game is at home against an AP top-10 team.
Miami has won 27 of its last 29 games at the Watsco Center, with a 14-2 mark this season, added to 13 straight victories in the 2015-16 campaign. In six seasons under Coach L, Miami is 77-22 overall at home and 38-15 in ACC action at home.
With the win Coach Jim Larrañaga has posted five 20-win seasons in his first six years at The U, and 11 career 20-win seasons. This is Miami’s eighth 20-win season since joining the ACC for the 2004-05 campaign. Larrañaga is just the second coach in Miami history with five 20-win seasons, joining Bruce Hale (1954-67).
With the win against Duke, Miami played its 11th ACC game against a team coming off of a loss. Miami (7-4) won at Syracuse, at Pitt, vs. Boston College, at NC State, vs. Virginia Tech, at Virginia and vs. Duke, but lost at Wake Forest, at Duke, vs. Florida State and at Louisville after the opponent had lost its previous game.
UM’s defense has held opponents to shoot less than 31 percent from downtown in 15 games (seven in ACC).
Miami forced 13 turnovers, the 20th game this season the Canes have forced the opponent to cough it up more than 10 times.
In 70 total minutes against No. 9 North Carolina and No. 10 Duke, Bruce Brown tallied 55 points, nine assists, eight rebounds, four blocks and four steals. He had 30 points, five assists, four rebounds, two blocks and two steals in 34 minutes against UNC and 25 points, four assists, four rebounds, two blocks and two steals in 36 minutes against Duke.
The freshman guard has scored in double digits in eight of the last 13 outings, while grabbing at least four rebounds in 24 of 28 games. He has at least two assists in 21 contests.
Redshirt senior forward Kamari Murphy finished the afternoon with seven points, six rebounds and a block. He has a block in ten of the last 15 games.
Senior guard Davon Reed pulled down a season-high 10 rebounds, while also adding nine points. He has grabbed five-plus rebounds in 12 games.
Miami held Duke to 21 first-half points, tying the Blue Devils’ season low, which they also had against Virginia on Feb. 15, 2017.
In the second half, the Hurricanes once again stepped up on the defensive front, holding Duke to a season-low 29 points in the half and 50 for the entirety of the game. Earlier in the season, Duke was held to 35 points twice, most recently against Clemson on Feb. 11, while scoring a season low 64 points in that same game.
The Canes’ defense held Duke’s second-leading scorer, Jayson Tatum, scoreless in the first half and just eight total points, 8.6 points below his season average of 16.6 ppg.
Miami’s won back-to-back games against top 25 teams for the first time since defeating Louisville and Virginia last season. The Hurricanes defeated No. 3 Virginia, 64-61 (Feb. 22, 2016), before taking down No. 11/- Louisville, 73-65 (Feb. 27, 2016).
Jim Larrañaga, Head Coach
On where this program is right now after this win against Duke…
“We’re growing and when you compete in the ACC, every team is hard to beat. We’ve had great battles with Duke. We expect those great battles to continue and hopefully we’ll win our share.”
On the excitement he saw from the students and the crowd today…
“We are not the perennial power house like Duke or Carolina. We don’t have the fan base yet, but the operative word is yet. This fan base is growing. We’ve been sold out for the past two seasons, the students have showed up for all the big games, now we need them to show up for all of the games. If we truly want to compete for national championships, our students need to understand that this is their team and their program. They can lift us up on their shoulders and take us to the promised land. They have to show up on a regular basis. They have to cheer wildly no matter who the opponent is. They have to create a home court advantage like some of the other teams in our league. We like where we are and we like the growth in the program. We like our recruiting and we like the guys that are returning.”
On the significance on 10 ACC wins and 20 overall…
“It is very satisfying to have another 20-win season, but we still have two huge games ahead of us. Those two teams are something like 33-1 at home. Florida State is undefeated and Virginia Tech only has one loss. As satisfying as today’s win was and what the record is now, our work is still ahead of us.”
Bruce Brown, Guard
On if he felt he would have a good game from the start…
“I honestly don’t know. I just went out and played hard. I just read their defense and saw what they were doing. Then the court opened up for me.”
On how it feels playing in big games…
“I’ve been playing in big time games my whole life, in AAU and high school, so I don’t think it affects the way I play at all. I played the same way I play every game.”
On what it meant to beat Duke and play the way he did…
“It’s great. Growing up, me and my dad used to watch Duke all the time and I just wanted to come out and perform. I played well and helped my team win.”
Davon Reed, Guard
On what this win meant for the school…
“Like I say after every win, a chance to get a win in this league is major. Especially with how the league is going, losing and winning left and right, and the standings changing every day. A chance to climb in the ACC poll and a chance to build our confidence. It’s always great to beat one of the best teams in the country. It was a great feeling for me personally to go out on senior day with a win. It’s just an amazing feeling.”
On what memories he’ll have from this win…
“I’m at a loss for words. Just thankful that Bruce came in and had a lights out game and everybody did their part, whatever it took. Offensively and defensively it showed and reflected in the score.”
On Bruce having a big game…
“I saw it right from the first time he scored and he was rolling. I was just encouraging him and hoping that he could continue and he obviously did for the remainder of the game.”
Duke Head Coach, Mike Krzyzewski
On his teams shooting…
“They’re good defensively. They didn’t shoot well either, because we were good defensively. I thought both teams were very good defensively. It was tough to get shots. The way the game evolved, it lends itself to physicality, in the lane and on drives. We’re not going to be as good without our veterans. Amile (Jefferson) is not running due to his injury. I didn’t play him most of the second half because he wasn’t running. We kept Grayson out because of his injury. We need those guys to calm people down on the offensive end. In the second half, four of the six guys playing are freshmen, the two big guys just haven’t had the experience because of injuries. So they’re cutting their teeth so to speak in the 16th ACC game in late February. The continuity on the offensive end is not up to par with the defense. But they defended well, so we didn’t get the shots we normally get.”
On Bruce Brown…
“Bruce Brown has had a great year, and was terrific today. Overall when you’re defending them, someone will probably score. He scored half their points. Someone was going to score some points. He had a great game and scored most of them. He’s an outstanding player. Our defense was not bad, he made tough plays to score, and a couple of times on turnovers we gave them lay ups.”
On the decision to not play Grayson Allen…
“I’d been thinking about it – he and Amile (Jefferson) for a week. They’ve been playing hurt, bottom line. At Syracuse he had no push, you could tell on defense and in his shooting. We have to get well. All these games are important but we have to get them well. The most important games are going to be played in a couple weeks. We’re going to be there. Wherever we are, we’re going to be there. We are going to be one of the teams that starts 0-0. There are three times you get to start 0-0, and that’s a goal. Only 68 teams are 0-0 out of 351. We are going to be one of them. Miami will be one of them, and quite a few of them from this conference. I think this game is indicative of games in our conference. There are just a couple plays, a bigger performance, like by Brown, something that separates you. Just a little bit. You don’t need much separation because all the teams are so competitive.”