Wil­liamson leads No. 1 Duke past Clem­son in ACC opener

The State (Sunday) - - College Basketball - BY JOEDY MCCREARY

Fresh­man Zion Wil­liamson had 25 points, 10 re­bounds and a spec­tac­u­lar 360-de­gree dunk, and No. 1 Duke beat Clem­son 87-68 on Satur­day night in its ACC opener.

RJ Bar­rett, the ACC’S lead­ing scorer, fin­ished with 13 points while fresh­man point guard Tre Jones had 10 points and a sea­son-best nine as­sists. Jack White added 12 points and Mar­quise Bolden had 11 for the Blue Devils (12-1), who shot 48 per­cent and turned 19 Clem­son turnovers into 27 points.

Play­ing their first game in 16 days, they needed roughly 20 min­utes to shake off the rust be­fore scor­ing the first 14 points of the sec­ond half to break it open and cruise to their sev­enth straight win.

Mar­c­quise Reed scored 15 points, Elijah Thomas fin­ished with 14 and Shel­ton Mitchell had 11, but the Tigers (10-4) had their four-game win­ning streak snapped.

Wil­liamson, who was re­cruited hard by Clem­son – his home­town of Spar­tan­burg, S.C., is an hour’s drive from the Tigers’ cam­pus – put on a show af­ter half­time with a pair of slick drives down the lane for layups im­me­di­ately be­fore Bar­rett’s jumper gave Duke its first 20-point lead with just un­der 17 min­utes left.

The best slam of Wil­liamson’s high­light-filled fresh­man sea­son came a few min­utes later, with his steal from Mitchell near mid­court lead­ing to his break­away 360.

BIG PIC­TURE

Clem­son: The strength of the Tigers is their age and ex­pe­ri­ence, with three grad­u­ate se­niors and a fourth-year se­nior in the start­ing lineup. But that ex­pe­ri­ence added up to yet an­other loss at Cameron In­door Sta­dium,

CLEM­SON (10-4): Skara 2-4 0-0 6, Thomas 7-9 0-1 14, Simms 1-11 0-0 2, Mitchell 4-12 3-3 11, Reed 4-8 5-6 15, Tyson 2-4 0-0 5, Jav.white 1-2 0-2 2, Jemi­son 2-2 0-0 4, Trapp 3-8 0-0 7, New­man 1-3 0-0 2. To­tals 27-63 8-12 68.

DUKE (12-1): Bar­rett 5-14 2-2 13, De­lau­rier 2-2 0-0 4, Red­dish 1-8 2-2 4, Wil­liamson 9-11 6-9 25, Jones 4-8 1-2 10, Robin­son 0-1 0-0 0, Jac.white 4-6 0-0 12, Bolden 5-10 1-1 11, Vrankovic 1-4 2-2 4, Besser 0-0 0-0 0, Gold­wire 0-1 0-1 0, O’connell 1-2 2-2 4. To­tals 32-67 16-21 87.

Half­time—duke 40-33. 3-Point

Goals—clem­son 6-15 (Skara 2-2, Reed 2-2, Trapp 1-1, Tyson 1-3, Mitchell 0-3, Simms 0-4), Duke 7-23 (Jac.white 4-6, Jones 1-2, Wil­liamson 1-3, Bar­rett 1-5, Robin­son 0-1, Gold­wire 0-1, O’connell 0-1, Red­dish 0-4). Fouled Out—none.

Re­bounds—clem­son 35 (Simms 10), Duke 39 (Wil­liamson 10). As­sists— Clem­son 14 (Reed 8), Duke 16 (Jones 9). To­tal Fouls—clem­son 16, Duke 15.

where they haven’t won since 1995.

Duke: ACC open­ers have been tricky for re­cent fresh­man-dom­i­nated Blue Devils teams, and this one was borderline ten­u­ous for a half. Then the Zion Show got rolling, and it turned into yet an­other easy win.

NO. 1 DUKE 87, CLEM­SON 68

GERRY BROOME AP

Duke's Mar­ques Bolden, left, guards Clem­son's John New­man III dur­ing the first half of Satur­day’s game in Durham, N.C.

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