EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Jordan Waters had a pair of touchdowns on the ground, Riley Leonard threw for a score and Duke beat Northwestern 31-23 on Saturday.

Leonard, who was 13 of 24 for 240 yards and an interception, found Jordan Moore with a short scoring pass early in the fourth quarter to give Duke a 28-16 lead and Brandon Johnson had a late interception in Wildcat territory to set up a field goal with 1:18 remaining.

Johnson finished the game by pouncing on Evan Hull’s fumble with 12 seconds left.

Waters rushed for a career-best 91 yards, including a 42-yard scoring run for the Blue Devils (2-0). Jaylen Coleman added 83 yards and a short touchdown run.

Hull caught 14 passes for a career-best 213 yards and a touchdown, and added 65 yards and a score on the ground for the Wildcats (1-1), who trailed 21-0 in the opening 16 minutes. Ryan Hilinski was 36 of 60 for a personal-high 435 yards with two scores and an interception.

Northwestern got within 21-10 by halftime and twice cut the lead to five points in the second half.

First-year coach Mike Elko won his first road game with Duke despite being penalized seven times for 85 yards.

The takeaway

Duke: Elko might wish his team built on the early 21-0 advantage, but his first road trip ended well. The Blue Devils watched Northwestern creep back into the game but the defense got stingy when it needed to and the offense shook off some bad luck and bad possessions to turn the game into a two-score affair in the fourth quarter. A 4-0 start before the Oct. 1 ACC opener against Virginia looks realistic.

Northwestern: The Wildcats bounced back from a rough first quarter but the defense came away looking even worse than it did in a season-opening win over Nebraska. The Blue Devils evenly split their 463 yards between the ground and air and averaged more than 8 yards per play. There’s a lot to shore up before the Oct. 1 Big Ten road opener at Penn State.

Up next

Duke: The Blue Devils host North Carolina A&T next Saturday.

Northwestern: The Wildcats welcome Southern Illinois next Saturday.