PROVIDENCE — You would not have blamed anyone for giving up on Yale at halftime on Saturday after Duke had overwhelmed the Ivy League champion in the first half.
But nobody did. A pro-Yale crowd roared at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center as the Bulldogs pushed back before ultimately losing 71-64.
The No. 4-seeded Blue Devils move on to face the winner of Saint Joseph’s and Oregon in the West regional.
No. 12 Yale got within three points when Justin Sears grabbed an offensive rebound off a Brandon Sherrod free-throw miss and scored with 41 seconds left, but Duke freshman Brandon Ingram hit two free throws and the Bulldogs missed the rest of their shots.
Yale had slowed Duke with full-court pressure and the Blue Devils were clearly rattled. They turned the ball over 7 times in the second half.
Ultimately it was a change by Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski that kept Duke ahead. He went to a 1-3-1 zone that allowed his team to close out on Yale’s 3-point shooters; the Bulldogs shot 17.4% from 3-point range on the day.
Yale went on a 15-0 run early in the second half, slicing into Duke’s 23-point half-time lead. The Blue Devils went without a point from 16:27 to 11:13, when Brandon Ingram finally swooped into the lane for a layup. He finished with 25 points and became the Blue Devils’ go-to option late in the game. Grayson Allen had 29, but 22 came in the first half when he was 4-of-6 from 3-point range.
NCAA TOURNAMENT SECOND ROUND HIGHLIGHTS