Charlotte, NC – Ryan Kelly led a balanced attack with 18 points and seven rebounds, as top-ranked Duke rolled into ACC play with a 67-50 victory over Davidson.
Quinn Cook added 15 points and early-season All-American candidate Mason Plumlee contributed 10 points and seven rebounds for Duke (13-0), which used a suffocating defense to remain unbeaten on the season.
"For our guys to go 13-0 with our nonconference schedule is just magnificent," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "It's terrific."
Jake Cohen led Davidson (7-6) with 19 points and eight rebounds, while De'Mon Brooks posted eight points and 12 rebounds in defeat. The Wildcats missed their first five shots of the second half along with three turnovers as part of a season-low point total.
The Wildcats didn't shot particularly well in the opening half, but they controlled the pace and locked down the Blue Devils defensively. Chris Czerapowicz's 3-pointer gave Davidson a 14-11 lead nearly eight minutes in, but Duke regained its footing and claimed a 29-24 lead after Kelly's trey with just under three minutes to go.
The Blue Devils didn't score for the remainder of the half, and Davidson knotted the contest on Brooks' layup with just under one minute remaining.
Davidson couldn't find its shooting stroke in the early stages of the second half, as it took the Wildcats just over six minutes to find the bottom of the basket on Czerapowicz's jumper. In the meantime, Duke scored the half's first 12 points and even Czerapowicz's bucket left the Blue Devils with a double- digit edge, 41-31.
"We had nine empty possessions in a six-minute period," Davidson head coach Bob McKillop said. "That's when they made their run and that's why they're No. 1."
The margin grew to 15 points at 48-33 on Tyler Thornton's 3-pointer, but the veteran Wildcats didn't wilt, making four straight shots after the barren start to close within 50-42 on Cohen's long-range bucket.
Davidson didn't get enough defensive stops down the stretch and never got closer than 10 down the stretch.
Duke leads the lengthy series, 89-17. This is the most played non-conference rivalry in Duke history ... Duke has reeled off 24 straight wins over the Wildcats ... The Blue Devils were outrebounded, 34-33, but held Davidson to 30 percent shooting ... Duke started 13-0 for the eighth time in school history.