Duke overcame a sloppy performance to advance past Alabama in the second semi-final of the NIT Season Tip-Off. The Blue Devils turned the ball over 19 times but managed to hang on to a 74-64 victory. Jabari Parker scored 27, and Duke will now face No. 4 Arizona in the tournament's final in New York on Friday night.
A slow start had Duke down eight points at the just nine minutes into the game, but consecutive three-pointers by Matt Jones woke up Mike Krzyzewski's team. Hot shooting from freshman phenom Jabari Parker helped build a 17-point second-half lead, but Alabama roared back when leading scorer Trevor Releford got going.
The Blue Devils held Releford scoreless deep into the second half, but the senior guard scored eleven points in the final twelve minutes as Alabama made their final push. Until Releford got going, Nick Jacobs was the only offense for the Tide. The 6'8 forward had 18 points in the losing effort.
Alabama will take on Drexel in the third place game of the tournament on Friday.