WINSTON-SALEM, N.C .- For the first time this season and after 14 games, Duke played a game in the home arena of an opponent. And after a balanced start to the competition, the Blue Devils reacted well towards the end of the first half.
Duke opened the season with a blowout victory over Kentucky and won two out of three games in Maui last November for a second place finish at the Maui Invitational. The Blue Devils also knocked out Texas Tech at Madison Square Garden last month.
But until today, the freshly occupied starting grid of head coach Mike Krzyzewski could still compete in a real street game.
"We are trying to prepare for March, so where do you have the chance to play against outstanding non-conference teams in large neutral arenas? "Krzyzewski said. "They do not do it during the conference, so that's our plan, whether we're first, last or whatever, what the hell does that mean?"
With five neutral games on the ledger and a home game for the ACC / Big Ten Challenge, the Blue Devils filled the remainder of their non-conference schedule with home contests against non-Power 5 schools.
Last week, the Blue Devils defeated Indiana on the road in the ACC / Big Ten Challenge and dropped to St. John's, which Duke will be lining up next month, as part of their two road games. However, these two games this year are both at home, so there is no real road competition.
The Blue Devils have demanded national criticism for being the last Division I program for a road game this season. Tobacco rider North Carolina, on the other hand, started the season with two road competitions against Wofford and Elon. An AP voter ̵
"We did not do it, then it will, you're a bad guy because you did not. We are not so good because we have not done that yet, "said Krzyzewski. "It's really ridiculous. When I see something like that, the person's knowledge of the game is degraded. Knowledge of the game Come on man. Every year we have a schedule for the top 10.
The young team has responded to the games of the neutral teams with three wins in four games against the top 12 teams.
"Junior Marques Bolden said," The first real street game, so we just had to come out and play hard. "
The start of the game was the exact opposite of how the Blue Devils ended the competition, and after rebuilding a 14-8 lead in the opening minutes, Wake Forest regrouped and beat a three-pointer deficit defeated a duke team within three minutes to a four-point lead, which was a favorite with 20 points in the competition.
The freshman finished in his first ever street game against the career Zion Williamson cheered the local people when he took the offense and scored the next two baskets followed by freshman RJ Barrett converted a layup for the 22:20 lead.
"We have in a few days ago [road game]"said Barrett. "We love street games. Silencing the crowd is fun.
While seasoned leaders such as captains Javin DeLaurier and Jack White have been playing road games in the past, this first real road environment for the four starting newcomers will be a crucial exercise for the ACC's hideous slates and the numerous upcoming top-25s Matches in the enemy areas of the Blue Devils.
"I think it was a good test for our young people, it was the first time they had a street game [in]," DeLaurier said. [19659002TrotzdestechnischenSpielsineinemStraßenspielamDienstagwardieUmgebunginWinston-SalembeiweitemnichtsofeindlichgesinntwieeinigederArenendieHerzoginderZukunftfindenwirdAufgrundderNähezuDurhamwardieMengeimLawrenceJoelVeteransMemorialColiseumetwadieHälftevonAnhängernvonBlueDevil
After they had chosen Wednesday as a mandatory rest day, the team will prepare for Saturday's encounter with the no. 13 Florida State on the road in Tallahassee, Florida.
"That's why I came to the ACC. There's no conference like this, "Williamson said," It was great for my first away game, I'm glad we could win and now to the next one. "