Zion Williamson took on 7-foot-6 Tacko Fall toward the end and won. So topped seeded Duke — scarcely — when two last-discard shots by UCF moved off the rim.
Aubrey Dawkins completed with 32 points, however his tip-in attempt simply missed Sunday, and Duke progressed with a 77-76 triumph to achieve the Sweet 16.
Williamson had 32 points, including a layup over Fall with 14.4 seconds left and his team trailing 76-73. Fall fouled out on the play and the 6-foot-7 Williamson missed the free throw, however RJ Barrett scored on a putback to put the Blue Devils (31-5) ahead.
Ninth-seeded UCF (24-9) had a final chance. Two of them, really, from in close.
B.J. Taylor missed a short jumper and Dawkins flopped on his tip endeavor with under 2 seconds left, the ball turning off the rim. Duke got the bounce back, ran out the clock and proceeded onward to the Sweet 16 for 27th time and fourth time in the previous five years.
Dawkins flinched at the miss. His dad, Johnny, is the UCF mentor and was a previous Duke star and long-time assistant under coach Mike Krzyzewski. The two mentors shared a long grasp at midcourt after it was finished.
Barrett completed with 16 points.
It looked as though Dawkins may bring down his alma mater in the NCAAs.
His last crate broke a 70-all tie and when Fall dunked Taylor’s miss — the play was reviewed for a conceivable shot-clock violation — the Knights were ahead 74-70.
UCF botched a huge chance to go up six when it couldn’t exactly on a rear way oop dunk endeavor with 1:49 left, and Cam Reddish returned with a 3-pointer for Duke. Taylor made 76-73 with two foul shots with 45 seconds to go.
Williamson then missed a 3, yet Duke snatched the bounce back andgot the ball back to their dominant freshman. Williams got a pass left of the key and spilled straight into Fall’s 7-6, 310-pound frame.
Fall had stuffed Williamson three previous times and Duke’s young star was less powerful underneath than he’d been his previous four games. Be that as it may, Williamson got this shot to drop, yelling as he fell hard to the ground.
At the point when Duke spilled away with the last bounce back, Williamson and his teammates hopped in festivity and help. They were proceeding onward.
Duke will confront fourth-seeded Virginia Tech or No. 12 seed Liberty in Washington, D.C., on Friday night for a spot in the Elite Eight.
Williamson, the game’s most unstable player, was unmistakably influenced by Fall. Who wouldn’t be as the Knights senior stood 11 inches taller than Williamson and has a wingspan of 8-foot-4?
Yet, with Fall inside, Williamson went outside hitting three 3-pointers subsequent to entering with only 18 on the season. Furthermore, when Fall was hit with foul inconvenience, Williamson charged to the hoop.
Fall completed with 15 and six bounce back in his final college game.
Duke’s four incredible freshmen combined for 72 of its 77 points. Reddish had 13 points and Tre Jones 11.
It was the second in a row drowsy begin for Duke in the NCAA Tournament. In any case, boy, when the Blue Devils got moving, it was an incredible sight as they shut the half with a 12-2 run to move in front.
Trailing 34-32 in the last four minutes of the opening half, Williamson hit a short jumper, at that point gathered Jordan Goldwire’s miss for a three-point play. Barrett included a three-point play and Williamson threw a one-handed bounce pass to a streaking Jones for an easy layup as Duke led 44-36 at the break.
Williamson had 15 points in the first half, yet had not dunked on the tall Fall — chiefly on the grounds that UCF’s center played only eight minutes because of foul trouble.
The two were the focal point of this one and toward the begin mimicked the beginning of the classic Rocky III final fight scene where a stone-colored Rocky Balboa gazed directly at loquacious Clubber Lang. The dull Fall had the Rocky influence this time while the enthusiastic Williamson bounced around before the game’s opening tip.
The two players outjumped the arbitrator’s hurl, however Fall effectively tipped it toward his teammates before Williamson could bounce up again.
The Knights will have some enormous shoes to fill (size 22) next season with Fall’s senior season complete. They additionally lose Taylor, the point monitor who has begun 101 of 104 games since landing at UCF in 2014-15. UCF has a strong center of experienced starters returning, led by Dawkins, who was second on the team in scoring average at 15.1 points a game.
Duke: The Blue Devils have had an excessive number of tentative stretches in their initial two games, however their staggering ability edge spared them against North Dakota State in the opening round and UCF in this one. Duke should be increasingly reliable in the event that it would like to make a championship run.
UCF’s season is finished.
Duke advances to play fourth-seeded Virginia Tech or 12th-seeded Liberty in the Sweet 16 at Washington, D.C., on Friday night.