Monday's roundup: Duke struggles to win over Elon

Associated Press and News staff

Durham, N.C. — Jahlil Okafor's best performance came on a night No. 2 Duke was at its worst.

Okafor had a season-high 25 points and set a school freshman record with 20 rebounds in the Blue Devils' 75-62 victory over Elon on Monday night.

Amile Jefferson added 13 points on 6-of-7 shooting and Justise Winslow had 12 points for Duke (9-0).

Okafor had Duke's first 20-rebound game since Elton Brand in 1998 but Mike Krzyzewski said his big numbers didn't make this performance any more palatable from a team playing its first game in 12 days.

"It's like sweeping dirt under the rug," Krzyzewski said. "The dirt's still there. Now he's a big rug. But you're still sweeping dirt under there."

The Blue Devils never trailed and led by 20. But they also finished with a season-worst 17 turnovers, made just 14 of 27 free throws and were just 3 of 16 from 3-point range.

"This is the worst we've felt all year after a win," Okafor said.

Luke Eddy finished with 16 points to lead Elon (5-5), which shot 42 percent to keep the final margin respectable.

The Phoenix — who shoot 37 percent from 3-point range — made just five 3-pointers. But three of them came in a span of about 50 seconds early in the second half to make things momentarily tense.

Collin Luther hit from long range with just under 17 minutes left to make it 44-33.

Okafor followed by banking in a jumper to start the 11-2 run that restored Duke's comfortable lead. Winslow's 3-pointer with 131/2 minutes left put the Blue Devils up 55-35.

Elon cut it to 12 before Jefferson hit layups 20 seconds apart and Rasheed Sulaimon followed with a jumper to put Duke up 63-45 with 81/2 minutes remaining. Sulaimon finished with 11 points.

Playing on his 19th birthday, Okafor broke the freshman rebounding record of 17 set in 1977 by Mike Gminski and matched twice. This was the second double-double of his short Duke career — and he took care of this one by halftime with 10 points and 11 rebounds at the break.

"We didn't know whether to double (Okafor) right away, double on the dribble, play one-on-one," Elon coach Matt Matheny said. "He's a very, very difficult matchup."

More Top 25 men

(At) No. 8 Gonzaga 94, Texas Southern 54: Kyle Wiltjer scored 21 points to help No. 8 Gonzaga rout Texas Southern.

Wiltjer made 9 of 11 shots, including all three of his 3-point attempts.

Domantas Sabonis added 16 points, Silas Melson 13 and Kevin Pangos 11 for Gonzaga (10-1), which was coming off a victory at UCLA.

Madarious Gibbs and Deverell Biggs each scored 12 points for Texas Southern (1-8). David Blanks added 11.

State men

Wayne State 67, (at) Northern Michigan 43: Michael Lewis had 17 points for Wayne State (2-5, 2-2 GLIAC) and Gavin Toma scored 12. Jordan Perez scored 11 for Northern (5-5, 3-2).

State women

(At) Oakland 109, Concordia 62: Leah Somerfield scored 18 and Olivia Nash had 17 as Oakland scored its most points in the Division I era on Excellence in Education Day at the O'rena.

Sinclair Russell added 13 points and eight rebounds, and Peyton Apsey had 13 points with seven assists for the Golden Grizzlies (4-4).

Kari Borowiak scored 16 and Hannah Orwat had 11 for NAIA Concordia (1-12).

Wayne State 69, (at) Northern Michigan 57: Shareta Brown had 27 points and 19 rebounds, Jackie Jones scored 16, and Christina Green had 13 points and eight rebounds off the bench for Wayne State (5-1, 3-1 GLIAC), which pulled away from a 48-48 tie.

Alyssa Colla scored 20 for Northern Michigan (4-3, 2-2).