No. 8 Duke 73, Auburn 50
Auburn seemed primed to give No. 8 Duke a stiff test Friday.
Then everything fell apart in the second half.
Camille Glymph scored 12 points but Auburn shot 27 percent from the field during the second half of a 73-50 loss to the Blue Devils.
''If it was a 20-minute ballgame, I'd probably feel pretty good about it,'' Auburn coach Nell Fortner said. ''But it's a 40-minute game, and that last 20 minutes was pretty tough for us.''
Freshman Elizabeth Williams had 18 points and 13 rebounds for Duke (2-0), which led 32-31 at halftime. Chloe Wells added 14 points, and Haley Peters scored all 10 of her points in the second half.
The Tigers (2-1) faltered when their two primary sources of offense in the first half, second-chance points and turnovers by Duke, ran dry after halftime.
Duke shot 38 percent and missed all 12 of its 3-point attempts, but managed to extend its winning streak at Cameron Indoor Stadium to a school-record 26 games. The Blue Devils have won their last 13 home openers.
Hasina Muhammad had 10 points for Auburn, which is winless in five career meetings with Duke. Glymph made four 3-pointers.
''I thought we fought hard,'' Fortner said. ''When you go on the road and you're playing a top-10 team, you can get defeated pretty early. We would get down eight and 10, and we came back.''
The Blue Devils scored the first eight points of the second half to take a nine-point lead, then pulled away with a strong interior performance.
Eleven consecutive Duke field goals in the second half came on layups or putbacks. Peters ended that string with back-to-back jumpers that capped a 13-0 run, giving the Blue Devils a 63-42 lead with six minutes to go.
Peters bounced back after playing six minutes in the first half and missing all three of her shots.
''Sometimes it's beneficial to see what is happening on the floor from the bench,'' she said. ''Coming out of halftime, I just wanted to be aggressive and attack the basket and look to make plays.''
Williams, who finished 8 of 12 from the field and blocked four shots, was aggressive from the start. She had Duke's first three baskets, sparking her team to a 12-3 lead.
''I felt pretty comfortable, especially with the way we started out the game,'' Williams said. ''We were running the floor really well and making some good plays, so I kind of fed off that energy.''
Auburn closed the first half on a 17-5 spurt, punctuating their charge with a buzzer-beating runner by Najat Ouardad. Muhammad got the Tigers back into the game, scoring all nine of her first-half points in the final six minutes of the period.
But Duke was too strong inside throughout. With Williams leading the way, the Blue Devils outrebounded the Tigers 52-35 and finished with a 44-18 advantage in points in the lane.
''She is a force that's hard to deal with,'' Fortner said. ''I don't think we did a very good job keeping her off the boards, obviously, and she pretty much had her way with us. We've got some work to do that in that department.''