DURHAM, N.C. — Seth Curry scored 12 of his season-high 31 points during the late run that helped No. 1 Duke pull away for a 90-77 victory over pesky Santa Clara on Saturday.
Mason Plumlee added 22 points and 13 rebounds for the Blue Devils (12-0), who needed a huge run late to overcome both a big game from Kevin Foster and a real scare from the Broncos (11-3).
Foster scored 18 of his 29 points in the first half, and his soaring baseline dunk put the Broncos up 45-41 with 16:30 left. But the Broncos managed just one field goal over the next 8½ minutes.
Curry hit two 3-pointers and followed with three layups during the Blue Devils’ 26-5 run.
Ryan Kelly had 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Quinn Cook finished with 15 points for Duke, which is 12-0 for the 10th time under coach Mike Krzyzewski. The Blue Devils won their 101st straight nonconference game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Evan Roquemore added 17 points while Marc Trasolini and Raymond Cowels III had 10 apiece for Santa Clara, which was playing the No. 1 team for just the second time since 1981 and fell to 0-12 all-time against top-ranked opponents.
No. 10 OHIO ST. 87, CHICAGO ST. 44
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Deshaun Thomas scored 17 points and Ohio State regained its shooting touch in its final tuneup before beginning Big Ten play.
LaQuinton Ross added 15 points, Lenzelle Smith Jr. had 13, Amedeo Della Valle had career-high 11 and Aaron Craft scored 10 for the Buckeyes (10-2), who complete an eight-game homestand when they host Nebraska in the conference opener on Wednesday.
The Buckeyes hit 33 of 58 shots from the field (57 percent).
Quinton Pippen, a nephew of ex-Chicago Bulls star Scottie Pippen, had 12 points for Chicago State (3-12), which fell to 0-11 away from home with its fourth straight defeat.
Tuckeyes opened the second half by making their first four attempts from the field. A 10-2 blitz at the outset of the second half swelled the lead to 47-26. The Cougars never got closer than 17 points again.
No. 12 ILLINOIS 81, AUBURN 79
CHICAGO — Tracy Abrams scored a career-high 27 points for Illinois.
The Illini (13-1) saw an 11-point lead shrink to one in the closing minutes but they prevailed after falling to Missouri in the Braggin’ Rights game a week earlier — their first loss under coach John Groce.
Frankie Sullivan buried a 3 for Auburn (5-7) to make it 68-67 with 4:29 remaining. Illinois then hit 13 of 18 free throws the rest of the way for a rare win at the United Center, where they had dropped three straight and five of six after winning 18 in a row.
Abrams, a sophomore guard, was 6 of 11 from the field and 13 of 15 from the free throw line while eclipsing his previous high by five points.
Brandon Paul finished with 13 points for Illinois but was just 3 of 12 from the field and missed all five 3-point attempts.
Sullivan led Auburn with 21 points. Rob Chubb scored 13, and Allen Payne chipped in with 10 points and 10 rebounds, but the Tigers dropped their second straight.
No. 14 FLORIDA 78, AIR FORCE 61
SUNRISE, Fla. — Kenny Boynton snapped a shooting slump with three 3-pointers in the second half when Florida pulled away.
Boynton had made only 4 of 32 from 3-point range over the previous five games, but he hit three in a span of 8 minutes to break the game open. The Gators used their superior size and smothering defense to grind down the Falcons, who shot 48 percent in the first half and 33 percent in the second half.
Florida (9-2) won for only the second time in the past four games. Air Force (8-3) fell to 2-77 against ranked teams.
Boynton, who ranks third in career 3-pointers made at Florida with 282, went 3 for 7 from long range and scored 14 points.
Erik Murphy of Florida scored 21 points, had seven rebounds and added four assists while missing only two shots in 29 minutes. He was chosen the game’s MVP.
The Falcons matched the second-best start in school history in their first 10 games but hadn’t faced a team of Florida’s caliber. Air Force’s Michael Lyons was held to 11 points, nine below his average, and he shot only 3 for 14.
NORTH CAROLINA 79, No. 20 UNLV 73
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — P.J. Hairston scored 15 points in his first career start for North Carolina.
Dexter Strickland added a season-high 16 points for the Tar Heels (10-3), who led by 15 points in the first half and by nine at the break. But UNC had to turn away a second-half surge by the Runnin’ Rebels (11-2) to earn the program’s 63rd straight home win against nonconference opponents.
Freshman Anthony Bennett had 15 points and 13 rebounds for UNLV, which led by a point briefly in the second half but spent most of the game in catch-up mode. Katin Reinhardt and Anthony Marshall each added 15 points for the Runnin’ Rebels, who also got Mike Moser back from an elbow injury after a four-game absence.
Hairston started in place of Reggie Bullock, who sat out with a mild concussion suffered in Thursday’s practice, and finished 5 for 10 from the field and hit two 3-pointers. He made two free throws with 28.5 seconds left after the Runnin’ Rebels had closed within 76-73.
No. 23 NORTH CAROLINA ST. 84,
W. MICHIGAN 68
RALEIGH, N.C. — C.J. Leslie scored 19 points to lead North Carolina State.
Richard Howell added 18 points on 8-of-8 shooting for the Wolfpack (10-2), who won their sixth consecutive game.
N.C. State shot 55 percent from the field, padding its NCAA-leading field goal percentage.
T.J. Warren scored 15 points, Scott Wood had 11 and Lorenzo Brown added 10 for the Wolfpack.
Nate Hutcheson scored 16 points to lead the Broncos (8-5). Shayne Whittington added 14 points and Darius Paul had 12 for Western Michigan.