Freshman sensation Zion Williamson scored a season-high 30 points with 10 rebounds, and No. 1 Duke won its first road game of the season by beating Wake Forest 87-65 on Tuesday night.
RJ Barrett finished with 21 points and matched a season high with seven assists, and Cameron Reddish added 10 points during his best game in a month, helping the Blue Devils (13-0, 2-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) win their eighth in a row.
The high-flying Williamson was 13 of 16 from the field with three 3-pointers — he entered with four all season — in surpassing the 28 points he scored in his debut against No. 2 Kentucky.
Duke pulled away in the second half, outscoring Wake Forest 45-31 and shooting 63 percent in the final 20 minutes while making 17 of 22 shots from inside the 3-point arc. The Blue Devils finished with 13 blocked shots while having none of theirs rejected and outscored Wake Forest 58-22 in the paint.
The Blue Devils took command when they began attacking the rim with a vengeance, hitting five consecutive layups to start the second half to push their lead into double figures for good. The margin grew from there, with Barrett stretching it into the 20s with a 3 with about 11 minutes left.
Freshman forward Jaylen Hoard scored 13 points, and Sharone Wright Jr. and Brandon Childress had 12 apiece for the Demon Deacons (7-7, 0-2), who have lost three of four to fall to .500 for the first time since November.
Duke: There might have been a concern about how the highly touted freshmen would handle their first game on an opponent’s home floor — especially considering the Blue Devils had lost six of their last nine ACC road openers. Nothing to worry about in this one, but tougher tests are coming.
Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons haven’t been able to get over the hump against the best teams on their schedule. They’ve lost nine straight against Top 25 opponents and have dropped 25 of 26 against ranked teams, with the lone victory an upset of No. 8 Louisville in March 2017. And they’re a combined 0-14 against rivals Duke and North Carolina under fifth-year coach Danny Manning.
Duke: Faces a more challenging road test Saturday at No. 13 Florida State.
Wake Forest: Visits Miami on Saturday.
Source: The Associated Press