NEW ROCHELLE, NY — No. 2 seeded Duke used 13 made 3-pointers to its advantage in a 89-67 victory against the No. 15 seed Iona College men’s basketball team during the First Round of the Midwest Region in the NCAA Championship at the PPG Paints Arena this afternoon.
The Blues Devils (27-7) shot 61.8 percent from the field in the first half that included nine made 3-point field goals to build a 53-39 halftime advantage, including a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Grayson Allen.
The opening 20 minutes featured various runs for both teams as Duke opened up a 14-5 advantage before the Gaels (20-14) rallied to tie the game at 19 following a Roland Griffin layup. Duke was able to push the margin up to as many as 17 points as Marvin Bagley III connected on a right wing 3-pointer with 5:22 left until halftime.
Zach Lewis helped cut the deficit back down to single digits for Iona with 2:38 to go in the period, however, the Blue Devils were able to quickly turn the lead back to double digits with a Gary Trent Jr. and used the Allen 3-pointer to own a 14-point halftime advantage.
Less than two minutes into the second half, Duke pushed the margin to above 20 points for the rest of the game following a Wendell Carter Jr. layup. Both offensives slowed down in the final half, as Duke shot 45.5 percent with just four 3-pointers made while Iona managed a 10-for-31 showing.
Griffin led the Maroon & Gold with 21 points on 9-of-12 shooting to go along with five rebounds, a steal and a block. TK Edogi added 11 points and nine rebounds while Lewis and McGill each recorded 10 points to round out four players in double-figures. The backcourt mates also combined for nine assists. Schadrac Casimir posted a game-high of six assists in the effort.
Bagley notched the game-high of 22 points in addition to seven rebounds and a steal to lead four in double-figures for Duke. Trevon Duval tallied 19 points and eight assists while Allen registered 16 points and nine assists. Trent finished with 16 points and six rebounds.
Iona finishes the season with a third consecutive MAAC Championship and ninth straight 20-win season, including eight under head coach Tim Cluess.