Arizona’s Keshad Johnson scored 14 points, and Caleb Love helped clinch another outcome against Duke with two free throws at the 4.3-second mark as the No. 12 Wildcats beat the second-ranked Blue Devils 78-73 Friday night in Durham, N.C.
It turned out to be a riveting nonconference game in the first week of the season.
Love, a transfer his first season with Arizona after playing for Duke rival North Carolina, was 4-for-4 on free throws. He averaged 19.7 points in three visits with the Tar Heels and made a huge 3-pointer against Duke in the 2022 Final Four semifinals.
Kyle Filipowski’s 25 points and Jeremy Roach’s 17 points paced Duke (1-1), which didn’t lose a home game last season in Jon Scheyer’s first season as coach.
Arizona went up 60-54 with less than 9 1/2 minutes to play before Duke stormed back for the lead on Jeremy Roach’s basket for a 67-65 lead with 2:11 to play.
Johnson made the next two baskets, and Arizona never trailed again.
Oumar Ballo’s 13 points, Kylan Boswell’s 12 points and Pelle Larsson’s 12 points were clutch for Arizona (2-0), which will be home next year when the teams have a rematch.
Love made two free throws at the 18-second mark, and Larsson made two more with 6 seconds to play. In between, Duke’s Mark Mitchell scored in the post.
The Wildcats did relentless work on the offensive boards, which helped overcome a couple of rough shooting stretches.
Filipowski posted seven points in the first three minutes of the second half. His second 3 of the second half pulled the Blue Devils within 52-50 before the game was tied at the 13:16 mark.
Love hit a 3-pointer at the end of the first half as the Wildcats led 41-33 at the break.
The game was tight for most of the first half until Arizona’s 10-3 finishing stretch.
–Field Level Media
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