The Duke Blue Devils were unable to blow out Albany on Friday afternoon. Instead, they built a double-digit lead early in the first half and rode it to the finish line, picking up the 73-61 win to advance to the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
Albany never went away despite being undersized at nearly every position. They cut the deficit to eight points with four minutes remaining, although Duke responded with a couple of key defensive stops to halt any chance their foes had at pulling the upset.
Seth Curry was the star for Duke. He scored a game-high 26 points, hitting multiple shots down the stretch to preserve the lead. Mason Plumlee chipped in with 23 points and nine rebounds. As a team, the Blue Devils shot 59 percent from the field.
Albany can head home knowing they gave it everything they had. They could've faded early, but they kept coming back. Jacob Iati led the way with 15 points. Peter Hooley added 13 points, while Sam Rowley and Mike Black both had 10.
With the win, Duke advances to the third round. They will face the winner of Creighton and Cincinnati on Sunday afternoon. Whoever wins that game marches on to the Sweet 16.
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