THE FLATS -- No. 9/8 Duke shot 52.9 percent from the field in the first half, which allowed it to withstand a spirited run in the second half and defeat undermanned Georgia Tech, 80-69, on Sunday evening in front of a fourth-straight sellout crowd at McCamish Pavilion.
Hot-shooting Duke (20-5, 8-4 ACC) raced out to a 9-0 lead and led by 26 points early in the second half. However, despite losing starting point guard Jose Alvarado, Georgia Tech (11-14, 4-8 ACC) cut the deficit to 12 with 7:05 to go in the game, drew within 10 on two different occasions and cut it to single digits in the final minute.
Already playing primarily with just a six-man rotation, the Yellow Jackets suffered a huge blow with 8:14 to go in the first half when Alvarado sustained a frightening left elbow injury on a fall to the floor. The elbow was stabilized but Alvarado was transported to a local hospital for further evaluation.
Georgia Tech's Josh Okogie led all scorers with 29 points. Okogie also paced the Yellow Jackets with four assists.
Grayson Allen led Duke with 23 points. The Blue Devils were playing without freshman Marvin Bagley III, the Atlantic Coast Conference's leading scorer and rebounder.