The Phil Knight Invitational Motion Bracket semifinal matchup between No. 1 Duke and Texas was billed as a clash of Duke’s Marvin Bagley III and Texas’ Mohamed Bamba, two potential No. 1 picks in the 2018 NBA draft.
Put a tally – emphatically – in Bagley’s column.
The Blue Devils freshman poured in his team’s first seven points in overtime to cap his 34-point, 15-rebound performance in Duke’s 85-78 victory over Texas on Friday to advance to the championship contest.
But while Bagley’s performance was a showcase of his future NBA talent, the contest itself was likely one Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski would like to soon forget.
Texas (4-1) opened the contest on a 12-4 run and built the lead to a 43-31 halftime advantage, thanks to a three-foul, scoreless first half from Grayson Allen and two fouls that limited Bagley.
Duke (7-0) paid for its lack of star power in the first 20 minutes on the offensive end of the floor, shooting 1-for-6 from 3-point range and going 8-for-15 from the free-throw line with the bench contributing just four first-half points despite heavy minutes.
The second half opened with more of the same, as the Longhorns built a 64-48 advantage before the Duke offense came alive.
Behind Allen and freshman Wendell Carter Jr., the Blue Devils put together a 22-6 run to tie it at 70 with just two minutes remaining.
With 32.8 left in regulation, freshman Gary Trent Jr. completed a three-point play that gave Duke a 73-72 lead – its first since the opening basket of the contest – and fouled out Bamba, who finished with nine points and 10 rebounds.
Texas tied it up before the buzzer, setting the stage for Bagley’s overtime clinic.
For Duke, Trent contributed 17 points, Carter registered a double-double – 14 points, 11 rebounds – and Allen added 12 before fouling out in regulation.
Duke is set to face the winnerof No. 7 Florida-No. 17 Gonzaga in the PK80 Motion Bracket on Sunday at 10:30 p.m.