Red­dish’s 3 pushes No. 1 Duke past FSU in fi­nal sec­ond

The Bradenton Herald (Sunday) - - Sports - BY BOB FER­RANTE

Cam Red­dish had strug­gled for more than a month, search­ing for any kind of con­sis­tency with his shot.

With Zion Wil­liamson on the bench in the sec­ond half and suf­fer­ing from dou­ble vi­sion af­ter get­ting poked in the eye, Red­dish made all the shots Satur­day – in­clud­ing the gamewin­ner.

The fresh­man for­ward hit a 3-pointer with 0.8 sec­onds left to lead No. 1 Duke past No. 13 Florida State, 80-78 on Satur­day.

Red­dish caught the ball on the wing off the in­bounds pass and made a wide-open 3 to en­sure Duke (14-1, 3-0 ACC) would win its ninth straight game. Two fresh­men car­ried the load for Duke as RJ Barrett scored 32 points on 10 of 19 shoot­ing and Red­dish fin­ished with 23 points on 9 of 15 shoot­ing.

“It was great,” said Red­dish, who scored 16 sec­ond-half points. “I was work­ing re­ally hard to get back to who I was. Trust­ing God. Pray­ing ev­ery day to be who I was. It was a big shot for us. My coaches and team­mates have helped me with my con­fi­dence. I’m glad I made the shot.”

It was a clutch shot at a crit­i­cal mo­ment for Duke, which hasn’t had many close games this sea­son and has won 13 of 14 games by 10 or more points.

The Blue Devils have just one loss – 89-87 to No. 5 Gon­zaga in Hawaii.

Duke was cer­tainly on the ropes Satur­day, es­pe­cially play­ing in the sec­ond half with­out Zion Wil­liamson. The star fresh­man left the game af­ter get­ting poked in the eye late in the first half. He didn’t re­turn and had 11 points and eight re­bounds in 17 min­utes.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski wasn’t sure what to ex­pect from the Blue Devils, who were with­out one of their top play­ers and fac­ing a top-15 team on the road. Barrett and Red­dish “kept us in it,” Krzyzewski said.

“They rose,” Krzyzewski said. “They rose to the dif­fer­ent oc­ca­sion. An oc­ca­sion that we hadn’t been in this year.”

Florida State nearly pulled off an up­set, which would have matched what hap­pened eight years ago. The Semi­noles knocked off No. 1 Duke 66-61 on Jan. 12, 2011. And this time they fell just short.

“Com­ing close just doesn’t count,” Florida State coach Leonard Hamil­ton said. “Maybe it does in horse­shoes but not in bas­ket­ball.”

P.J. Savoy made a pair of free throws with 15.8 sec­onds left, just sec­onds af­ter forc­ing a

turnover, to put Florida State ahead 78-76.

Barrett, who had 19 sec­ond-half points, then hit the first of two free throws with 5 sec­onds left. He missed the sec­ond, but the Blue Devils re­tained pos­ses­sion af­ter a re­view over­ruled a call on the floor that the ball had gone out of bounds off a Duke player, set­ting up Red­dish’s shot.

Mfiondu Kaben­gele came off the bench to record his third ca­reer dou­ble-dou­ble, ty­ing a ca­reer high with 24 points and 10 re­bounds for Florida State (13-3, 1-2). Phil Cofer made five 3-point­ers and had a sea­son-high 21 points.

“We had a chance there at the end,” Hamil­ton said. “We ba­si­cally got the things that we were look­ing for; we just came up a lit­tle short. Duke is the kind of team that can win it all. They have all of the in­gre­di­ents. And they are go­ing to con­tinue to get bet­ter. That’s a scary thought.”

WIL­LIAMSON IM­PROV­ING

Wil­liamson got hurt when he drove to the bas­ket. Florida State’s Trent For­rest hit the fresh­man in the face, and Wil­liamson landed hard on the court. He stayed down for sev­eral mo­ments cov­er­ing his face. He saw a trainer and went to the locker room just be­fore the half ended. Wil­liamson sat on the bench for the sec­ond half, but didn’t play.

He suf­fered from dou­ble vi­sion and sat on the bench in the sec­ond half, but Krzyzewski said it’s pos­si­ble that Wil­liamson will play in Duke’s next game against Syra­cuse.

“The good thing – he didn’t have headaches,” Krzyzewski said. “He’s bet­ter now. So hope­fully he’ll be able to play on Mon­day. … It was a big loss. For this game, are you kidding, es­pe­cially with the ath­leti­cism we’re fac­ing?”

PHO­TOS BY MARK WALLHEISER AP

Duke guard Jor­dan Gold­wire, right, for­ward RJ Barrett, cen­ter, and for­ward Jack White rush the court to cel­e­brate with Cam Red­dish (2) af­ter Red­dish made the win­ning 3-pointer against Florida State with less than a sec­ond left in the game at Tallahassee.

Florida State guard Trent For­rest, right, gets his hand in the face of Duke for­ward Zion Wil­liamson dur­ing Satur­day’s first half in Tallahassee, Fla.

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