Duke beats Badgers to claim national title

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Jahlil Okafor No.15 of the Duke Blue Devils shoots against Frank Kaminsky No.44 of the Wisconsin Badgers in the first half during the NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium on Tuesday in Indianapolis, Indiana. AFP PHOTO

Jahlil Okafor No.15 of the Duke Blue Devils shoots against Frank Kaminsky No.44 of the Wisconsin Badgers in the first half during the NCAA Men’s Final Four National Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium on Tuesday in Indianapolis, Indiana. AFP PHOTO

INDIANAPOLIS: Guard Tyus Jones scored 23 points and coach Mike Krzyzewski won his fifth championship as the Duke Blue Devils beat the Wisconsin Badgers 68-63 to claim the NCAA basketball national title.

First-year Duke guards Jones and Grayson Allen scored 29 of Duke’s 37 points in the second half while teammates Jahlil Okafor and Justise Winslow battled foul trouble Monday night at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Okafor, projected to be one of the top two picks in this year’s NBA draft, picked up his first foul in the opening minutes of the game and had four with more than nine minutes still left in regulation.

With Okafor and Winslow on the bench during long stretches, Jones and Allen carried the Blue Devils helping them rally from a nine-point deficit.


“They showed such grit tonight,” said Krzyzewski, who moved ahead of former Kentucky boss Adolph Rupp on the all-time championship win list for US college coaches. “Our bench was spectacular.”

Jones nailed a three pointer that gave the Blue Devils the lead for good with four minutes left.

Jones followed with another three to make it an eight-point lead with under two minutes to go. He ended with a game-high 23 points, two more than Wisconsin star Frank Kaminsky, and was named Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four tournament.

Allen tallied 16 points, Winslow scored 11 and Okafor had 10 points in the win.

Kaminsky paced the Wisconsin attack with 21 points and 12 rebounds and Nigel Hayes scored 13.

AFP

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