Duke opens ACC play with comfortable victory over Virginia Tech
Duke defeated Virginia Tech 76-56 on Wednesday night as it got off to a 1-0 start in conference play.
The Blue Devils were behind at halftime, but stormed back after the break before cruising to a double-digit victory. Duke out-scored the Hokies 44-29 in the second half.
Freshman phenom Paolo Banchero was a big reason for Duke’s resurgence. He scored 17 of his 23 points after the break, and did so efficiently — 6-of-11 from the field, 1-of-2 from 3-point range and 4-of-4 from the free throw line.
He also grabbed 8 rebounds and dished out 3 assists, including this beauty:
Paolo Banchero with one of the better passes you’ll see in the college game 👀🔥 pic.twitter.com/uka8kYEURV
— Rick Heidrick (@rheidrick24) December 23, 2021
Banchero got help from junior guard Wendell Moore Jr. He continued his breakout campaign, scoring 18 points on 6-of-9 shooting. He also contributed 4 rebounds and 4 assists.
This may turn out to be one of the most impressive wins on Duke’s résumé by the end of the season. The Hokies are the ACC’s second best team according to KenPom, and they played well on Wednesday night in Durham. Keve Aluma led the way with 25 points and 10 rebounds.
Duke will now rest for a week over the Christmas holiday before taking on Clemson on Dec. 29.