Top-seeded Duke narrowly survives UCF 77-76 to advance to Sweet 16

Duke
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Central Florida’s Tacko Fall (24) drives the basket against Duke’s Javin DeLaurier during the first half of a second-round game in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament in Columbia, S.C., Sunday, March 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Richard Shiro)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Zion Williamson took on 7-foot-6 Tacko Fall at the end and won, and top-seeded Duke survived when two last-ditch shots by UCF rolled off the rim.

Aubrey Dawkins finished with 32 points, but his tip-in try just missed Sunday, and Duke advanced with a 77-76 victory to reach the Sweet 16.

Williamson had 32 points, including a layup over Fall with 14.4 seconds left and his team trailing 76-73. Williamson was fouled and missed the free throw, but RJ Barrett scored on a putback to put Blue Devils (31-5) ahead.

Ninth-seeded UCF (24-9) had a final chance, but B.J. Taylor missed a short jumper and Dawkins failed on his tip attempt with less than 2 seconds left.

Duke got the rebound, ran out the clock and moved on to the Sweet 16 for 27th time and fourth time in the past five years.

Dawkins cringed at the miss. His father, Johnny, is the UCF coach and was a former Duke star and longtime assistant under coach Mike Krzyzewski.

Barrett finished with 16 points. 
 

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