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Duke rolls to another easy win, books a trip to NYC

Nov 12, 2008 - 6:49 AM DURHAM, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Kyle Singler scored 19 points to lead No. 5 Duke to a 97-54 victory over Georgia Southern in the 2K Sports Classic Benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer on Tuesday.

Nolan Smith added 13 points for Duke (2-0), which advances to the semifinals of the tournament that will be held at Madison Square Garden on November 20. The Blue Devils will meet the winner of the Carbondale Regional, which is ongoing at Southern Illinois.

"That was one of our goals from the start of our season," Singler said. "We're excited - New York is going to be fun and there are going to be some good teams. It's the next step in our season."

The Blue Devils had an easy time extending their home winning streak against non-conference opponents to 61 games. They jumped to a 16-4 lead just over six minutes into the game and opened a 52-25 advantage at the half.

"Well we played really well. I don't know if we can play much harder than that and I thought we beat a good team," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "I mean they played hard. I just thought that every kid played hard and unselfishly. It was an outstanding game for us. It was a great game."

Willie Powers scored 17 points for Georgia Southern (1-1), which posted a 65-63 victory over Houston on Monday.

"Our team is obviously not ready to play a game of this caliber," Georgia Southern coach Jeff Price said. "I thought we had a great win last night and hoped to have some carry over. But with six new players and just a lot of newness on our team, we just weren't ready for a game of this magnitude against a really, really good team."

Singler added eight rebounds in just 22 minutes of action and earned MVP of the Durham Regional of the tournament. He opened the season with a 19-point, 10-rebound performance against Presbyterian on Monday.

Gerald Henderson and Greg Paulus each scored 11 points for Duke while Jon Scheyer added 8 points and a game-high seven assists. Blue Devils freshman Elliot Williams came off the bench and grabbed 11 rebounds in just 14 minutes in the second half.

Duke rolled on Monday as well but committed 21 turnovers. The Blue Devils cut that number to 11 on Tuesday but did struggle from the line, hitting just 25-of-49 free throws.

""[I'm not concerned] at all. First of all we're a good shooting team," Krzyzewski said. "When you play really hard like this, and although we've played really hard in two exhibitions and last night, this is at a high level tonight. It was a high level performance and you get a stop action and you lose a little bit of discipline. It's November 11 and the familiarity of playing that hard and the stop actions is something you have to get used to again."

"I think we played a good overall game besides shooting free throws," Singler said. "We were playing hard tonight and sometimes you can rush your shot when you get up to the line. Guys have to settle down and just focus a little more on their shot and their form and balls will go in."

    --- --- -----
    GA SOUTHERN 25 29 54
    DUKE (5) 52 45 97 FINAL

    Nov 11 11:10 PM

    (5) DUKE 52 HALFTIME

    Nov 11 10:01 PM
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    Georgia Southern 4, Duke(5) 9  1st - 16:30Nov 11 9:13 PM