Durham, NC, United States (4E Sports) – Mason Plumlee tallied 19 points and 14 rebounds for his 19th career double-double as No. 8 Duke opened its campaign with a 74-55 win over Georgia State Friday at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Plumlee shot eight-for-12 with four blocks, Seth Curry added 15 markers while Tyler Thornton had 13 for the Blue Devils, who posted their 13th straight season-opening victory.
“I felt like there was a lot left out there, a lot of points, a lot of rebounds to be had. Overall, individually, I thought I played OK. I thought Tyler (Thornton) was great tonight. He was knocking down shots, he was all over the floor, and he was picking up their guards,” Plumlee said.
“I think we showed that we have energy. We want to be good, and we’re going to play hard. Then we’ll just get better the more we play,” he added.
The win also marked Duke’s 31st consecutive win in a home opener, a streak that began in 1983. Duke’s last loss in a home opener came on Nov. 28, 1982 against Vanderbilt, 76-75, in double overtime.
The veteran backcourt trio of Quinn Cook, Curry and Thornton combined to score 36 points while shooting 11-of-21 from the floor and 8-of-17 from three-point range. Freshman guard Rasheed Sulaimon contributed six points on a pair of three-pointers.
The Blue Devils’ stifling defense forced Georgia State to commit 16 turnovers, converting them into 16 points.
The Panthers were led by Devonta White’s 19 points while RJ Hunter added 14 points and 10 caroms.
The Blue Devils held Georgia State without a field goal for stretches of four minutes and three minutes in the first half and unleashed a 13-2 run sparked by Plumlee and Thornton to turn a close 17-15 lead into a 30-17 advantage.
In the second half, Duke hit three straight three-pointers to open the second half to extend a 10-point halftime lead to 17 points which they protected until the final buzzer.