Duke Advances to Elite Eight with Win Over Top-Seeded Houston

DALLAS, Texas – Fourth-seed Duke men’s basketball advanced to the Elite Eight on Friday night, defeating No. 1-seed Houston, 54-51, in the South Region semifinal at American Airlines Center. Jeremy Roach scored 14 second-half points and Kyle Filipowski led the team with 16 points and nine rebounds. Ryan Young provided 23 key minutes off the bench, scoring four points and adding four rebounds, finishing the game +18 in the box score. 


  • Houston scored the first six points of the game, triggering an early Duke timeout with 18:14 on the clock. Kyle Filipowski knocked home a 3-pointer to give the Blue Devils their first points of the night just over three minutes into the contest. A layup from Ryan Young drew Duke within one possession, 10-7, at the 14-minute mark.
  • Jared McCain drew a charge and then hit his first 3-pointer of the night to make it a 14-10 deficit shortly before the under-eight timeout. A dunk by Mark Mitchell pulled the Blue Devils within one, 17-16, which remained the score at the final media break of the first half.
  • Two free throws from Tyrese Proctor gave Duke its first lead, 21-10, with 2:46 on the first-half clock. A floater at the horn by Houston sent the Blue Devils into the break leading by one, 23-22.
  • Filipowski drove to the hoop for a scoop layup on Duke’s first possession of the second frame and Jeremy Roach connected on a turn-around jumper on the next trip down the floor, giving Duke a 27-25 lead. A 3-pointer from Proctor pushed the advantage to four, 32-28, Duke’s largest lead of the night so far.
  • Young rocked the rim with an emphatic dunk with five minutes elapsed in the second half and Roach drilled a pull-up jumper to put the Blue Devils back ahead by four, 36-32. Roach then knocked in a corner 3-pointer to push the lead to five, 39-34. The senior captain then became the first Blue Devil in double-figures following three free-throws out of the under-12 timeout.
  • A strong layup through contact by Filipowski gave Duke a four-point edge, 50-46, as the clock ticked under five minutes to go. Three straight defensive stops were followed by a Roach mid-range jumper, expanding the Blue Devils’ advantage to eight, 54-48, forcing a Houston timeout with 1:13 left to play.
  • A three-point-play followed by a defensive stop by the Cougars gave the No. 1-seed possession in the frontcourt with 16 seconds remaining. Duke’s defense held strong, forcing a stop and securing the 54-51 win.


  • Friday’s NCAA Tournament regional semifinal victory is Duke’s first win over a No. 1-seed since defeating Wisconsin, 68-63, in the national championship game on April 6, 2015, in Indianapolis.
  • Duke will play in its 24th all-time Elite Eight on Sunday, marking the third-most Elite Eight appearances by any team.
  • Duke has advanced to the Elite Eight in three of its last four NCAA Tournaments.
  • The Blue Devils have now won five consecutive NCAA Tournament games played in the state of Texas (two wins each in 2015 and 2010 – both in Houston).
  • With the win over Houston – ranked No. 2 in the most recent AP Top-25 – Duke secured its first win over a top-5 team since defeating No. 1 Gonzaga, 84-81, on Nov. 26, 2021, in Las Vegas.
  • Duke’s defense held Houston to 51 points, 23.1 below its season average of 74.1. The Blue Devils have held 30 of their 35 opponents to below their respective scoring average.
  • The 51 points scored by Houston was its second-lowest scoring output of the season, trailing only the 41 points scored versus Iowa State on March 16.
  • Through three NCAA Tournament games, Duke’s defense has averaged just 51 points allowed per game.
  • The Blue Devils limited the Cougars to just 22 first-half points, the fewest scored by Houston in an opening half since scoring 21 at Iowa State on Jan. 9 and just the second time in the 2023-24 campaign Houston was held to 22 points or less in the first half.
  • Duke snagged a halftime lead, 23-22, using a 10-2 run late in the first half to move in front. The Blue Devils are now 25-1 this season when leading at halftime.
  • Duke out-rebounded Houston, 34-30, winning the rebounding battle for the 24th time this season. The Blue Devils are now 22-2 this season when finishing with more rebounds than their opponent.
  • As a team, Duke assisted on 14 of its 20 made shots, a 70-percent assist rate.
  • The Blue Devils move to 122-40 (.753) all-time in the NCAA Tournament, the best winning percentage in tournament history by a team with a minimum of 20 games played.
  • Friday marked the first meeting between Duke and Houston.
  • Kyle Filipowski scored a game-high 16 points, while grabbing a team-best nine boards.
  • The sophomore center knocked down three 3-pointers for the sixth time this season and ninth time in his career, and also dished two assists.
  • Jeremy Roach scored all 14 of his points following the intermission and has posted at least 10 points in five of his last six games.
  • Ryan Young played 23 minutes off the bench, finishing the game +18 in the box score.
  • The graduate student scored four points on 2-for-2 shooting from the field and reeled in four caroms, while also logging one steal.
  • Tyrese Proctor‘s lock-down defensive effort resulted in a career-high three steals, while also contributing nine points, four assists and a rebound.
  • In Proctor’s last 10 games, the sophomore guard has distributed 41 assists with just 11 turnovers.
  • Jared McCain played all 40 minutes for the first time in his career and added seven points on 3-of-6 shooting, hit the glass with six boards and dished four assists.


  • “That was just a different game, so to start out that way and just claw our way back. I think any questions about their mental toughness or any questions about their heart, I think they answered that tonight. Obviously we have to respond quickly and get ready for a quick turnaround on Sunday, but I’m just really proud of them. Ryan (Young)’s defense, his physicality to match what they do, I thought was a big difference in the game. Then Tyrese (Proctor) didn’t have — he has nine points and four assists, which was key. He was just so steady for us, but his defense was off the charts, off the charts.” – head coach Jon Scheyer
  • “Just going back to last year and the second round against Tennessee, this game right here was that same type of game. Just a great, gritty team and their culture. Just seeing the togetherness, how we didn’t quit out there tonight, that really shows the growth from last year. We remember how upset we were from last year, and we didn’t want to repeat that again. We know we have a great team. We’ve been through so much this year. We just stuck together, and that was the most important thing.” – sophomore center Kyle Filipowski
  • “I take a lot of pride in my defense. I think I set the tone last year. I thought I started off the season not at the same level I was last year, and obviously watched a lot of film and just got back to work. I mean, it’s all about preparation and how we are in practice, how I am mentally in practice, and just taking pride when the game is on the line. The game is going to be won on defense. All the 50/50 balls we came up with towards the end of the game really helped us. That’s all, it really is just pride.” – sophomore guard Tyrese Proctor


  • No. 4-seed Duke (27-8) advances to the South Regional Final, taking on No. 11-seed NC State on Sunday, March 31. The game tips off at 5:05 ET, broadcast on CBS.

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Duke Centennial

In 2024, Duke celebrates its Centennial, marking one hundred years since Trinity College became Duke University. Duke will use this historic milestone to deepen the understanding of its history, inspire pride and strengthen bonds and partnerships, and prepare for a second century of continued excellence and impactful leadership. To learn more, please visit 100.duke.edu



First appeared on goduke.com

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