• 45°

Duke falls to Oregon in Sweet Sixteen

By Greg Beacham

AP Sports Writer

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Dillon Brooks scored 22 points and Oregon advanced to the brink of its first Final Four in 77 years with an 82-68 victory over defending national champion Duke on Thursday night in the West Region semifinal of the NCAA Tournament.

Elgin Cook had 16 points and nine rebounds for the top-seeded Ducks (31-6), who will meet Oklahoma on Saturday. The second-seeded Sooners routed Texas A&M 77-63.

After a season-long rise in the Pacific Northwest, the Pac-12 champion Ducks emphatically arrived on the national stage with a strong second-half rally to beat the mighty Blue Devils (25-11) for the first time in school history.

Freshman Brandon Ingram scored 24 points, but Duke fell short of its third Elite Eight trip in five years. The Blue Devils lost five of their final 10 games.

No longer just a football school, Oregon is flying high after comfortably holding off Duke for one of the biggest wins in the program’s history.

Oregon was the champion of the first NCAA Tournament in 1939, but hasn’t been back to the Final Four since. The Ducks advanced to the Elite Eight for the first time since 2007 and the third time since 2002.

Brooks hit four 3-pointers to lead the Ducks, who also broke the school’s single-season wins record with their 31st. They’ve won 10 straight since mid-February while winning the Pac-12’s regular-season and tournament titles.

Leading scorer Grayson Allen got 12 of his 15 points in the second half, but Duke couldn’t make much progress after Oregon jumped to a double-digit lead early in the second half.

For all of coach Mike Krzyzewski’s incredible success, the Blue Devils are 0-5 in NCAA Tournament games in the Pacific time zone.

The Ducks took charge shortly after halftime, following a tight first half in which neither team made a big move. Oregon jumped out to an 11-point lead after back-to-back 3-pointers by Casey Benson and Chris Boucher, and they got the arena rocking with back-to-back fast-break dunks from Jordan Bell and Cook moments later.

Duke even broke out a zone defense in an attempt to slow down the Ducks, but their balanced lineup always found another scorer.

Kobe Bryant and Apple CEO Tim Cook watched the game from a Duke fan section, while Nike’s Phil Knight was among the Oregon contingent. Rams running back and Duke basketball fan Todd Gurley also attended the game.

BRANDON’S BOW

Ingram had an outstanding NCAA Tournament, scoring 69 points in Duke’s three games. If the skinny 18-year-old forward heads to the NBA as expected, he’s likely to be a top-three pick after showing incredible promise in his only season in Durham.

TIP-INS

Duke: Marshall Plumlee got two early fouls and finished with six points in his final game.

Oregon: Casey Benson hit three 3-pointers and scored 11 points.

UP NEXT

Oregon: Faces Oklahoma in the West Region final.

Comments

Local

Scout’s Honor: With dedication of flag retirement box, Salem Fleming earns Eagle Scout rank

College

North Carolina king, queen of NCAA lacrosse tourneys

High School

High school football: State’s top honor goes to Jalon Walker

Education

Kannapolis seniors walk elementary schools

Local

Local real estate company employees come out in force to build Habitat house

Local

Quotes of the week

Coronavirus

Auditors find oversight lacking for $3 billion of state’s pandemic aid

Nation/World

When will gas situation return to normal?

Local

Rowan native Shuping posthumously receives Concord Police Department’s Medal of Valor, Purple Heart

News

GOP measure on penalties for rioting draws fire

News

Black high school softball player told to cut hair

Coronavirus

State shows 303 COVID-19 deaths in Rowan

Coronavirus

CDC: Fully vaccinated people can largely ditch masks indoors

Crime

One arrested, another hospitalized in Castor Road stabbing

China Grove

China Grove Roller Mill open for tours Saturday

News

Facing personnel deficiencies, local fire departments request tax rate increases

Local

‘Panic buying’ creates gas supply shortages locally, statewide after pipeline cyberattack

Business

Twice as nice: Planet Smoothie opens alongside Cold Stone Creamery in co-branded store

Local

Spencer board gets update on South Iredell rat problem

Education

West Rowan teacher awarded $15,000 outdoor learning grant

Cleveland

Town of Cleveland plans celebration May 22

High School

High school girls tennis: Busy Hornets win again easily

High School

High school softball: Nixon, Walton top all-county team

Education

All Hood Alumni and Friends Symposium scheduled June 18