DURHAM, N.C. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Freshman phenom Zion Williamson scored 29 points, Tre Jones flirted with a triple-double and No. 2 Duke routed St. John’s 91-61 on Saturday.
RJ Barrett added 15 points and 14 rebounds while Jones had 13 points, seven rebounds and seven assists while also playing lock-down defense on Shamorie Ponds. The Blue Devils (19-2) shot 56 percent while winning their fifth straight.
Williamson stuffed the stat sheet in this one — hitting 13 of 17 shots while finishing two blocks and a couple of his customary highlight-reel dunks.
He scored 12 points — all either at the rim or the free-throw line — during the 26-6 run that bridged the halves and pushed the lead into the 20s. Cameron Reddish capped the run with his fourth 3 of the game, making it 61-39 with about 16½ minutes left.
LJ Figueroa had 14 points and Marvin Clark II added 12 for the Red Storm (16-6), who fell behind by 20 points before they hit a shot in the second half while losing their third in four games.
Ponds, the hero of last year’s upset win over Duke and averaging nearly 21 points this year, had all 11 of his in the second half. He faced relentless pressure all day from Jones, and a couple of his five turnovers led directly to breakaway dunks by Williamson.
The Red Storm knocked off one Duke team full of one-and-done freshmen — stunning last year’s group 81-77 in Madison Square Garden behind 33 points from Ponds — but with Jones neutralizing him this time, they couldn’t do it again.
If nothing else, though, they’re still the answer to a trivia question: St. John’s was the last non-ACC team to beat Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium, pulling it off in 2000.
As for Williamson, the dominant big man’s 29 points, six rebounds, and five steals are sure to grab the attention of another New York team – the Knicks. At 10-41, the NBA’s worst team has their eyes on the first pick in the NBA draft and the Duke star could be their target.
St. John’s faces another daunting road challenge Tuesday night at No. 10 Marquette — coached by former Duke assistant and player Steve Wojciechowski.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)