No. 2 Duke regains its shooting touch to torch Notre Dame

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"We won four bouts, but we could have done more", said Virginia head coach Steve Garland.

The two freshman each had excellent games Monday as the 2nd ranked Blue Devils easily beat an injury-depleted Notre Dame team in South Bend, after the game the Williamson and Barrett talked about staying focused on their college season despite all of the National Basketball Association hype surrounding them.

Duke was led by Zion Williamson who finished with 26 points, which breaks a Duke freshman record for most games with at least 25 or more points. The Irish must take on the two titans of the ACC, No. 3 Virginia and No. 2 Duke, with only one day of rest in between. Duke played near ideal, shooting 59-percent from the field. That hasn't been a huge difference this season as Notre Dame (11-8, 1-5 ACC) has struggled overall, with losses to Radford, Syracuse and NC State in South Bend. She also dished out a game-high 10 assists to go along with three rebounds and three steals.

Mariana Mabrey led Notre Dame with 20 points, five rebounds and four assists, shooting 4-of-6 from behind the 3-point line. The Blue Devils' immediate response to that was a 10-0 run over a span of 2:22. UVA led 45-33 on the board, had 21 to 11 bench points and led in the paint, 34-26.

He took a pass from Barrett to score inside. Jones missed nearly two weeks with a separated shoulder.

But the Irish scored on their next three possessions to get their offense going. Against the Irish, Duke's freshman three-headed monster proved yet again that the hype is real. Jones nearly started a highlight reel play halfway into the period, but Zion Williamson was not able to finish off of a behind-the-back pass from Jones on the fast break.

Virginia’s Jack Salt center goes up for a shot next to Notre Dame’s John Mooney left during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday Jan. 26 2019 in South Bend Ind. Virginia won 82-55
College Basketball Rankings: Zion Williamson leads Duke to an easy win at Notre Dame and has the Blue Devils No. 4

Marques Bolden scored two baskets inside, including a slam dunk, and Barrett sank a jumper.

The 12-9 Tar Heels came in as the obvious underdog, fizzling out in a season with back-and-forth wins and losses throughout.

Duke excelled for stretches in building a 46-28 halftime lead.

Virginia's opening run came as Notre Dame missed its first nine shots before Mooney's layup with 13:36 left. Ty Jerome had 13 points and a career-high nine rebounds.

Notre Dame big man John Mooney, whom Brey said is playing as well as anyone in the ACC right now, will be the key figure in this game from Notre Dame's perspective.

While Notre Dame's final 10 opponents are a combined 20 games under-500 in conference play, Brey and the Irish know they still have a chance to turn the season around.

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