Duke's Coach K on Syracuse game-winning shot: 'the basketball gods do that'
John Gillon hit a 3-point shot from the top of the key as time expired to give the Syracuse Orange a 78-75 win over the Duke Blue Devils at the Carrier Dome.
Gillon carried the Orange (17-12, 9-7) to a key victory by big play both inside and out to finish with a game-high 26 points.
Duke combined for 18 fouls in its loss on Wednesday, with Grayson Allen and Luke Kennard both picking up four. Syracuse shot 88 percent from the foul line to reverse a three-game skid, while breaking up Duke’s seven-game winning streak.
No. 10 Duke (22-6, 10-5) played with its two guards despite the foul trouble. The Blue Devils needed it against an aggressive Syracuse fueled by Gillon, who also hit a layup to tie the game at 75 with 38 seconds left.
After Gillon’s game-tying 3-pointer at the 13:08 mark of the second half, Duke freshman Harry Giles tipped an offensive rebound out to the corner to Matt Jones on the other end. Kennard found freshman Jayson Tatum, who had scored eight points in his first eight minutes, for his first bucket of the second, a triple that gave Duke a 52-49 lead.
But Gillon, who sent Tatum to the floor in the first half before sinking a 3, shouldered past the Blue Devils’ star wing for a layup.
Allen, who went 0-for-6 before making his first 3, drained one from long range that gave Duke a 73-72 lead. The junior guard pulled up from the left wing for the shot.
Kennard led Duke with 23 points, and Tatum, who led with 14 at the break, added five. Graduate student forward Amile Jefferson added 14 to complete Duke’s double-figure scorers in front of a raucous crowd of 30,331.
Jessika Morgan: 919-829-4538, @JessikaMorgan