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Duke barely challenged in dominating opener

DURHAM, N.C. — Only at Duke could there be so much dissatisfaction with a 30-point win.

The No. 8 Blue Devils opened a season of high expectations Monday night with an 80-49 rout of Presbyterian in the 2K Sports Classic, but few from Duke were content with it.

Not Kyle Singler, who scored 12 of his 19 during the decisive first half but uncharacteristically missed seven shots. Not Nolan Smith, who scored 15 but said the Blue Devils "were just off."

And certainly not coach Mike Krzyzewski, who improved to 27-2 in home openers at the school despite his team's 21 turnovers.

"It's almost like we're trying a little bit too hard on the offensive end at times," Krzyzewski said.

Still, the Blue Devils did enough to cruise to their 60th straight nonconference home win. They face Georgia Southern tonight for a semifinal berth at Madison Square Garden.

GA. SOUTHERN 65, HOUSTON 63: Trumaine Pearson had 19 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Eagles in the 2K Sports Classic.

Bulls see work to do

TAMPA — USF never trailed, led by 21 with five minutes left and beat the University of Tampa 79-64 in an exhibition, but Bulls guard Chris Howard wasn't pleased with the performance.

"My teammates might take it as a challenge, (but) I just didn't think we got after it tonight," he said. "We didn't play as if it was a Big East game, a Marquette or a UConn."

USF, playing its crosstown rival for the first time in 19 years, allowed the Division II Spartans to stay close, leading 55-49 with six minutes to play. An 18-3 run put the game in hand for good.

"We'll take the win, but we know we have a lot of work to do to get ready for Friday," the regular-season opener against SMU, coach Stan Heath said. "We have to fix a lot of holes right now."

Senior guard Jesus Verdejo had 27 points and Howard had 18. Sophomore guard Dominique Jones had 11 assists but scored only eight on 2-for-10 shooting. Guard Rashad Callaway led the Spartans with 16 points.

NO. 14 TENNESSEE: Freshman point guard Daniel West has been determined academically ineligible to play this season.

WOMEN: Virginia Tech star Brittany Cook has a right knee sprain and is day to day.

Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.

Duke barely challenged in dominating opener 11/10/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 1, 2011 5:18pm]
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