Saturday , Dec , 02 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Blue Devils and Hoyas set for slugfest

Durham, NC (Sports Network) – A top-25 matchup takes place in Durham this
evening, as the 11th-ranked Duke Blue Devils play host to the 18th-ranked
Georgetown Hoyas in non-league action from Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Mike Krzyzewski’s team has won six of its first seven games this season
with the lone loss coming against a ranked Marquette team in the
championship game of the CBE Classic in Kansas City last week. Since then,
the team has responded with a pair of victories, topping Davidson last
Saturday (75-47) and then Indiana (54-51) on Tuesday as part of the ACC/Big Ten

The Hoyas suffered their second loss of the season last time out, falling to
the Oregon Ducks at home 57-50 on Wednesday.

The Hoyas are clinging to a 6-5 advantage in the all-time series with Duke and
edged out the Blue Devils last season at the Verizon Center, 87-84.

Georgetown led by two at the break, but could not hold onto the slim lead, as
the team fell at home to a surprising Oregon squad. Jonathan Wallace was the
only Hoya to notch double digits in the loss, tallying 17 points. Big men Jeff
Green and Roy Hibbert failed to produce like they often do, combining for just
nine points, on 4-of-11 shooting. Georgetown also committed a costly 17
turnovers in the game. Playing better fundamental basketball is a must if the
Hoyas are to secure a win in Durham. This is not an offensive-minded team in
2006-07, with Georgetown averaging just 68.2 ppg. It is a low scoring output
considering the team is shooting .492 from the floor. Wallace and Hibbert lead
the team in scoring with 12.2 ppg each. One of the top shot-blockers in the
Big East, the 7-0 Hibbert already has 19 blocks in the first six games. Green
gives the team a third scoring option at 10.8 ppg and is the team’s top
rebounder at 6.3 caroms per game.

It wasn’t pretty, but Duke improved to 8-0 in ACC/Big Ten Challenge play with
a three-point win over Indiana a couple of days ago. DeMarcus Nelson posted a
game-high 19 points, while adding six rebounds in the win. Jon Scheyer was
the only other player to finish in double figures, with 10 points. Duke’s
talented big man Josh McRoberts struggled offensively, going 2-of-8 from the
floor for seven points. He did however, lead the team with seven boards. A
reason for concern though, has to be the team’s inability to shoot the ball.
Duke converted just 31.8 percent of its shots in the game, including .333 from
behind the arc. The team also committed 15 turnovers and has a whopping 122 in
the first seven games (17.4 per game). The team is only averaging 70.7 ppg
this year, despite shooting .491 from the floor. Defensively however, the Blue
Devils have played much better, limiting foes to just 52.3 ppg, on under 40
percent shooting from the floor (.356) and under 30 percent from behind the
arc (.269). Nelson leads the offensive charge with 14.3 ppg. He is followed in
the scoring column by McRoberts (10.7 ppg) and Scheyer (10.7 ppg). Nelson and
Scheyer are both shooting over 46 percent from behind the arc this season and
have combined for 24 of the team’s 35 three-pointers to date.