Several Duke players react after COVID-19 crushes their tournament hopes


DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Several players on the Duke men’s basketball team reacted on social media after a single case of COVID-19 crushed their season.

Duke forward Matthew Hurt tweeted, “Worked so hard for this 💔.”

Freshman Henry Coleman III tweeted, “Pain 😭” to express his disappointment.

Others vented their frustration with a series of sad and crying emojis. 

Just hours before the Blue Devils were set to play Florida State in the ACC Tournament on Thursday, Duke announced a member of the program tested positive for COVID-19. Because of that single case, the team had to withdraw from the tournament and is now in quarantine.

In a statement, Duke’s Director of Athletics Kevin White said, “Unfortunately, after going an entire season with no positive COVID-19 tests among our men’s basketball student-athletes and coaching staff, one member of our program tested positive following Wednesday’s ACC Tournament game in Greensboro. After working with our medical professionals and following Duke and ACC Medical Advisory Group health, safety, and contact tracing protocols, the student-athletes on our team are now in quarantine. Since last March when the pandemic started, we have listened to our medical experts and always put safety at the forefront of any determinations regarding competition. As a result, this will end our 2020-21 season. We wish every team still playing college basketball good health and the very best during the next few weeks.”

Duke fans were equally as disappointed. Lifelong fan Finn Jenkins said, “It was disappointing, waking up and going from our last win to now nothing at all. It’s definitely tough.”

He added, “It’s definitely been a really long season; lots of highs and lows I think. So it’s almost fitting it ends on this chaotic note. I think it’s kind of like telling what the team has been going through this season.”

The Blue Devils had won their first two games in the ACC Tournament and were set to face Florida State in the quarterfinals on Thursday night at the Greensboro Coliseum. Duke is 13-11 overall and finished 10th in the ACC with a 9-9 record.

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