With the victory, Duke improves to 20-1 overall and 10-0 in the ACC. The Blue Devils now have the upper hand in the pursuit for the number one seed for the conference tournament though they still have to play No.10 Maryland (twice), No. 22 Florida State and a rematch with the Tar Heels among their eight games remaining. Duke has won the last five meetings in the series with the Tar Heels and are now 32-31 versus North Carolina since Sylvia Hatchell took over the Tar Heels in 1986. However, North Carolina still leads the all-time series 47-37.
This Duke rout comes almost a year to the day that the Blue Devils spanked the Tar Heels by 40 points at Cameron Indoor Stadium. And for the first half of the game, it appeared that another 40 point blowout was inevitable as Duke led 50-19 at halftime. However, North Carolina (20-3, 8-2) played with passion and fight after halftime, though they were not able to get any closer than 18 points.
UNC’s loss was their second in their last four games and prevented Hatchell from reaching the 900 win plateau. The Tar Heels have lost each of their three games by 20 or more points. UNC previously fell to Maryland (85-59) and Tennessee (102-57).
Keys to the game
1.Duke’s shooting. Duke displayed the shooting touch that has them ranked as one of the best shooting teams overall and the top three-point shooting team in the nation this year. The Blue Devils are currently averaging 76.8 points a game on 47.1 percent shooting from the field including 42.4 percent from beyond the arc.
Duke was red-hot in the first half as they connected on 55.9 percent (19-34) of their shots and 77.8 percent (7-9) of their three-point shots in the half. The Blue Devils finished the game shooting 46.2 percent (30-65) from the floor and 61.1 percent (11-18) from beyond the arc.
Chloe Wells (6-7), Trish Liston (3-6), Chelsea Gray (1-2) and Alexis Jones (1-3) knocked down three-pointers for the Blue Devils.
2. Duke’s first half defense. The Blue Devils held North Carolina to 21.9 percent (7-32) shooting in the first half and forced 14 turnovers. Duke converted the Tar Heels’ first half turnovers into 14 points.
UNC started out the game shooting just 3-of-16 from the field. The Tar Heels finished the game shooting 33.3 percent (21-63) from the floor and 25 percent (3-12) from beyond the arc.
3. Bench production: Duke got 23 points from their bench while UNC only got seven points from their reserves. Blue Devil reserve Trish Liston, who was 5-of-10 shooting from the floor including 2-of-2 from beyond the arc, scored 10 of her 15 points in the second half. Richa Jackson tallied eight points off the bench for Duke.
4. Foul trouble: While Duke (22) was whistled for more fouls than UNC (18) for the game, it was the Tar Heels that felt the effect of the whistles in the first half. Duke was called for ten fouls while North Carolina whistled for nine fouls in the first 20 minutes.
UNC played without their starting post players, Xylina McDaniel and Walteia Rolle, for a good portion of the first half as a result of foul trouble. McDaniel, the likely ACC Freshman of the Year, appeared on the floor just 13 minutes in the first half after picking up two fouls and a technical. McDaniel had no points on 0-of-2 shooting and two caroms in the first half. Rolle picked up three fouls in 11 minutes. Rolle scored seven first half points on 3-of-11 shooting.
Who won the individual matchups?
1.Sylvia Hatchell, UNC vs. Joanne P. McCallie, Duke
This is a toss-up. Duke is the more talented team and has won five straight over the Tar Heels. However, McCallie (477-181 in 21 years overall, 161-33 in six years at Duke) deserves credit for the Blue Devils’ start to the game.
Hatchell (899-317 in 38 years overall, 627-237 in 27 years at UNC) has done stellar work to get the Tar Heels to 20 wins this early in the season and did a great job of discussing UNC’s defense in second half of the game. However, the Tar Heels weren’t prepared to start the game and it cost them dearly.
2. Alexis Jones, Duke vs. Tierra Ruffin-Pratt, UNC
Jones won the matchup.
Jones, a 5-8 freshman, was tasked with the responsibility of defending the 5-10 Ruffin-Pratt and she showed that she was up for the challenge. Jones helped Duke hold Ruffin-Pratt, the Tar Heels leading scorer, to 18 points on 3-of-14 shooting and forced her to commit 11 turnovers.
Jones tossed in nine points on 4-of-10 shooting and grabbed seven rebounds. She also contributed three assists and committed five turnovers.
3. Haley Peters, Duke vs. Xylina McDaniel, UNC
Peters gets the edge here.
Peters, a versatile player that can play three positions, was matched against UNC’s star power forward. Peters did a fine job overall, she scored 14 points on 6-of-11 shooting. Peters also grabbed seven rebounds and dished out five assists.
McDaniel, a 6-2 freshman, was not effective in the first half but was a dominant force in the second half. McDaniel scored all 12 of her points and grabbed four of her six rebounds in the second half. She was 4-of-7 from the field and 4-of-7 from the charity stripe.
4. Elizabeth Williams, Duke vs. Walteia Rolle, UNC
Williams gets the edge in this matchup though slightly.
Williams posted her third double-double of her career with 13 points and 11 rebounds, including four on the offensive end. She was 4-of-9 from the field and 5-of-6 from the free throw line. Williams also blocked two shots.
Rolle, like McDaniel, picked up her game in the second half. Rolle, who scored on seven points on 3-of-11 from the field in the first half, finished the game with 17 points and eight rebounds (six offensive). She was 8-of-20 from the field and also blocked two shots.
Five stars of the game
1. Five stars: Chloe Wells. Wells scored a career-high 18 points on 6-of-7 shooting from beyond the arc. She also had three steals, one assist and one rebound in 31 minutes.
2. Four stars: Haley Peters.
3. Three stars: Elizabeth Williams. Williams posted her third double-double of the season, 13 points and 11 rebounds, and eighth of her career. She has scored in double-figures in 23 straight ACC games and has blocked a shot in 54 straight games.
4. Two stars: Alexis Jones.
5. One star: Trish Liston. Liston, who scored 15 points, knocked down 3-of-6 treys to move into fourth-place on the Blue Devils all-time three point list with 130 career treys. She was 5-of-10 for the game in 25 minutes off the bench.
- Duke has won 20 games for the 16th straight year and 18 of the past 19 seasons. The Blue Devils also reached 10 conference victories for the 16th straight year.
- Duke is now 8-1 on the road while UNC fell at home for the first time at home in 15 games (14-1).
-The Blue Devils have scored 80 or more points12 times this season.
- North Carolina committed 24 turnovers while Duke turned the ball over 22 times.
- Duke is 3-1 against ranked opponents.
- Duke got 25 second chance points while UNC got 12.
- Elizabeth Williams and Chelsea Gray were named to the Wooden Mid-Season Award list on Jan. 22.