Duke is going to the Elite Eight.

The Blue Devils punched their ticket to the next round with a win over Houston on Friday night in the Sweet 16. Duke was led by Kyle Filipowski, who contributed 16 points, 9 rebounds and 2 assists in the win.

Duke will meet ACC foe NC State in the Elite Eight with a chance to reach the Final Four for the first time since 2022. The 11th-seeded Wolfpack have been the biggest surprise of the Tournament so far this season and continued their run with an upset win over Marquette earlier in the night.

Here are 3 takeaways from Duke’s win:

Kyle Filipowski controlled the game

Filipowski controlled this game nearly from start to finish with his scoring, rebounding in passing. He led Duke in the former 2 categories and was also excellent as a distributor on Friday night despite only ending up with 2 dimes.

Filipowski made 3-of-5 3-point attempts and was also Duke’s best shooter on the night. As a team, the Blue Devils made 6-of-17 shots from deep. Filipowski was the only Duke player to drain multiple 3-pointers in this contest.

He also had an impact on the defensive end of the floor as he helped limit Houston to 42% shooting on the night.

Duke’s defense stepped up

Duke’s first-half defense was excellent. The Cougars shot just 34.5% from the field before the break and went into the locker room down 23-22. In the second half, Houston’s offense woke up a little bit and hit 50% of its field goal attempts.

However, the damage was mitigated because Duke forced 6 second-half turnovers. Houston only attempted 20 shots in the second half — partially due to a slow tempo, but also because of the Blue Devils’ stingy defense that forced Houston into longer possessions.

Tyrese Proctor led the team with 3 steals, all of which came in the second half.

A golden opportunity awaits

Duke will now head to the Elite Eight where it will find a familiar foe in NC State.

The Wolfpack are here, in-part, because they’ve already upset Duke once this month. NC State defeated the Blue Devils in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament back on March 14. A win in that game would have ended NC State’s season — it was nowhere near consideration for an at-large bid in the NCAA Tournament.

Instead, the Wolfpack have just kept winning. Following their victory over Marquette on Friday, NC State has won 8 straight games.

NC State is clearly a threat worth taking seriously at this point in the season, but it’s hard to ask for a better path to the Final Four if you’re Duke. Facing an 11-seed in the Elite Eight is close to an ideal scenario on its own — let alone an 11-seed that you beat by 15 points on the road earlier this season.

A game time for Duke vs. NC State will be announced at a later date.