College basketball: No. 16 Duke, No. 22 UNC women pick up key victories

Published 11:30 pm Thursday, January 12, 2023

Associated Press

DURHAM — Celeste Taylor scored 19 points and No. 16 Duke beat Clemson 66-56 on Thursday night for its 10th straight win in college women’s basketball.

Duke pulled away on a 16-6 run between the third and fourth quarters and led 58-44 with 5:09 to play. Elizabeth Balogun made a pair of 3-pointers and Taylor had four points during the stretch.

Taylor was 6 of 14 from the floor and made three 3-pointers. Shayeann Day-Wilson added 12 points and Vanessa de Jesus 11 for Duke (15-1, 5-0 Atlantic Coast Conference), which has won 10 of the last 11 in the series. Balogun finished with eight points.

The Blue Devils scored 11 points from 20 turnovers, was 9 of 24 from long range and shot 15 of 22 from the line.

Amari Robinson scored 10 of her 16 points in the second half to lead Clemson (11-7, 2-4). Ruby Whitehorn had added 12.

Duke jumped out to a 17-9 first-quarter lead, never trailed and led 29-26 at the break. A 7-2 surge from Clemson knotted it at 26-all for the game’s only tie.

Duke plays at Georgia Tech on Sunday.

No. 22 UNC tops Virginia

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Kennedy Todd-Williams and Deja Kelly each scored 21 points and No. 22 North Carolina dominated the fourth quarter in beating Virginia 70-59.

Virginia built a 57-48 lead with 6:46 to play but only made one more field goal the rest of the way as North Carolina had a scoring run of 13-0 before closing the game on a 9-0 run. The Cavaliers made just 3 of 15 field goals (20%) in the final 10 minutes and were outscored 28-8.

Alyssa Ustby had 15 points for North Carolina (11-5, 2-3 ACC). Todd-Williams was 6 of 13 from the field, with three 3-pointers, and 6 of 8 from the line to set a career-high in scoring.

Kelly had a game-high 13 points in the first half as North Carolina led 30-27 after holding Virginia to below 30% shooting.

Taylor Valladay scored 16 points and Sam Brunelle had 15 points and nine rebounds for Virginia (13-4, 2-4).

North Carolina faces No. 11 North Carolina State on Sunday.

Florida St. upsets Wolfpack

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Freshman sensation Ta’Niya Latson set a school record as she scored 31 points on 13-of-16 shooting and Florida State raced past No. 11 North Carolina State 91-72 on Thursday night.

Latson reached 30 points for the sixth time this season, a Seminoles record. However, she did miss a free throw in the fourth quarter, ending her streak of 18 straight. Sara Bejedi added 21 points for Florida State (16-3, 5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference).

Four players reached double figures for the Wolfpack (13-4, 3-3), led by Saniya Rivers with 12 off the bench. It was their biggest ACC loss since losing by 30 at Louisville on Feb. 28, 2019.

North Carolina State plays at rival North Carolina on Sunday in a nationally televised game.

No. 7 Irish stop Wake Forest

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Maddy Westbeld matched her career-high with 25 points and No. 7 Notre Dame bounced back from its worst offensive game of the season with an 86-47 win over Wake Forest on Thursday night.

Westbeld led the way by making 10 of 15 shots, the 10 field goals a career best, almost two years to the day she had 25 points against the Demon Deacons. She dominated the first half with 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting.

Olivia Miles had 13 points for the Fighting Irish (13-2, 4-1 Atlantic Coast Conference), who were coming off a 60-50 loss at North Carolina. Early enrollee freshman Cassan Prosper, a 6-foot-2 guard from Montreal, had 12 points in just her fourth game. Texas transfer Lauren Ebo scored 10. The Irish shot 54%.

Elise Williams scored 13 points for Wake Forest (11-7, 2-5), which shot just 31% and was outrebounded by 22.



Buzzer-beater sinks Mountaineers

BOONE (AP) — Jalen Finch made a layup at the buzzer, Andrei Savrasov scored 21 points and Georgia Southern defeated Appalachian State 67-65 on Thursday night.

Finch had the ball at the top of the arc, split two defenders and swooped in for a layup off the glass as time expired.

Savrasov also added 11 rebounds for the Eagles (11-7, 4-1 Sun Belt Conference). Finch scored 14 points.

The Mountaineers (9-9, 2-3) were led in scoring by Donovan Gregory, who finished with 21 points and four assists. Tyree Boykin added 13 points.

Appalachian State hosts Troy on Saturday.


UNC Asheville defeats Longwood 54-46
ASHEVILLE (AP) — Drew Pember’s 19 points helped UNC Asheville defeat Longwood 54-46 on Thursday night.

Pember had 14 rebounds for the Bulldogs (12-6, 4-1 Big South Conference). Tajion Jones scored 10 points and added eight rebounds and three blocks. Fletcher Abee shot 3 for 6, including 2 for 3 from beyond the arc to finish with 10 points, while adding three steals.

Isaiah Wilkins led the way for the Lancers (12-6, 4-1) with 10 points, 15 rebounds and two blocks. Michael Christmas added nine points for Longwood. Zac Watson also had eight points. The Lancers broke a seven-game winning streak with the loss.

Both teams play on Saturday. UNC Asheville visits Gardner-Webb while Longwood hosts South Carolina Upstate.