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Duke, Virginia to meet for ACC tournament title

Freshman Jabari Parker soars in for a second-half dunk in the midst of a 20-point effort that helps Duke hold off North Carolina State.

MCT

Freshman Jabari Parker soars in for a second-half dunk in the midst of a 20-point effort that helps Duke hold off North Carolina State.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Jabari Parker and T.J. Warren kept trading baskets in the kind of shootout expected from the Atlantic Coast Conference's top scorers.

Because No. 7 Duke finally slowed Warren when it counted, the Blue Devils are playing for the championship.

Parker scored 20 and the Blue Devils beat Warren and North Carolina State 75-67 on Saturday in a tournament semifinal.

Rasheed Sulaimon added 16 points for the third-seeded Blue Devils (26-7), and Rodney Hood had 14 points and keyed the defensive effort against Warren, the ACC player of the year.

Warren led the league with an average of 24.9 points, and Parker was second at 19.2.

In this one, Warren scored 21 but was just 4-of-13 after halftime while facing a barrage of double teams.

"Rodney did a good job on him just to keep him to 21," coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "You can overcoach, and we overcoached our preparation. He was doing what we asked him to do, and it wasn't working, and he said, 'Coach, let me just play him my normal way.' That was better."

Duke earned its 31st championship game appearance and first since 2011.

The seventh-seeded Wolfpack (21-13), playing its third game in three days, shot 36 percent in the second half after hitting 67 percent in the first.

NO. 6 UVA 51, PITT 48: Coach Tony Bennett keeps pushing his Cavaliers for more in what is already the program's best season in more than three decades.

Next up is the chance to do something that even Ralph Sampson couldn't do: Win an ACC tournament title.

Anthony Gill hit two free throws with 8.5 seconds left to lift Virginia to its first championship game in 20 years.

The Cavs arrived in Greensboro with their first outright regular-season title since 1981 and second No. 1 seed. They have just one title: the 1976 championship led by tournament MVP Wally Walker.

"It would be great to put another banner and have that to share with them," Bennett said.

"Wally sent me a text: 'We want some company.' "

Virginia (27-6) let an eight-point lead slip to one in the final seconds. But Gill made two free throws after James Robinson's hanging layup made it 49-48.

The fifth-seeded Panthers (25-9) had a chance to tie with four seconds left, but Justin Anderson tipped Robinson's 3-point attempt to Gill with 0.5 seconds left.

Final: No. 6 Virginia

vs. No. 7 Duke

1 today, Greensboro, N.C.

TV: ESPN, Ch. 44

Duke, Virginia to meet for ACC tournament title 03/15/14 [Last modified: Saturday, March 15, 2014 11:13pm]

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