Survive and Advance - Duke beats Cal State Fullerton 78 - 61
Survive and advance is the slogan often used during March Madness. Duke won their 1st round game in Greenville, South Carolina Friday night by beating Cal State Fullerton by a score of 78 - 61.
As expected a #2 seed Duke should beat a #15 seed Cal State Fullerton. However, after a four drive and checking in my hotel late, I turned on the tv in my room only to see St Peter's take Kentucky to overtime and then beat them by a score of 85 - 79 to pull off a major upset in the NCAA Tourney.
At the tip-off of this game, I will admit I was nervous, but Duke came out and got the win. Duke came out strong with a 17 - 4 lead but Cal State was able to hang around and even had the game within 6 points during the first half. However, Duke lead by 10 points at the half and was up by 20 points at one point in the game. Duke ended up getting the win lead by Paolo Banchero 17 points. Five Blue Devils scored in double figures for this game.
Slippery floor - The first half had several players slipping and falling on the court, one of which included Wendell Moore. I wasn't aware that the arena was also a hockey arena till a media friend had told me. Whether it was related to the hockey arena or just sweat from the players on the court this had become a problem. In the post game press conference Coach K mentioned he was concerned about possible injuries. Coach K had the media laughing after he stated.. "Then that damn floor was slippery. I mean, on both ends. So I don’t know what it was. I know it wasn’t the shoes. Nike called me and wanted to make sure I didn't say it was the shoes".
At the end of the post game press conference Coach K answered a question relating to the first win for this team in the NCAA Tourney and stated.. " It's exciting. I mean, we've won an NCAA game. These kids have won an NCAA game. In order to win something big, you have to win NCAA games. We looked at this as a championship level game, and we'll look at Sunday as a championship level game. Hopefully do a good job."