Tudor: Card guard Smith next big challenge for Duke defense - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Tudor: Card guard Smith next big challenge for Duke defense

Posted: Updated:
But during the last six games, Russ Smith has averaged 23.2 points, including a 31-point explosion in Friday's 77-69 NCAA Midwest semifinal win over Oregon in Indianapolis. But during the last six games, Russ Smith has averaged 23.2 points, including a 31-point explosion in Friday's 77-69 NCAA Midwest semifinal win over Oregon in Indianapolis.

The biggest different between the Louisville team that Duke will face Sunday and the one Duke beat 76-71 on Nov. 24 is simply the play of Cardinal guard Russ Smith.

In that November game _ played in the Bahamas Battle 4 Atlantis tourney _ Duke held the 6-foot-1 junior guard to 17 somewhat harmless points.

But during the last six games, Smith has averaged 23.2 points, including a 31-point explosion in Friday's 77-69 NCAA Midwest semifinal win over Oregon in Indianapolis.

"He looks unstoppable right now," said Oregon coach Dana Altman. "When he got going, we didn't have an answer."

The regionally 22nd-seeded Blue Devils (30-5) ousted Michigan State 71-61 in Friday's second game at Lucas Oil Field to set Sunday's  5:05 p.m. game against Rick Pitino's top-seeded Cards (32-5) for a ticket to next weekend's Atlanta Final Four.

Along with 6-foot senior Peyton Siva, Louisville's guard starters are a virtual copy of Duke's Seth Curry (6-2) and Quinn Cook (6-1).

In the November game, Curry and 6-4 freshman Rasheed Sulaimon did most of the defensive work against Smith, who missed 12 of his 19 field-goal attempts.

Cook wound up being voted most outstanding player of the Bahamas event after scoring 15 points, plus six assists, against the Cards.

Sunday's winner in Indianapolis will face the West Regional survivor _ Wichita State or Ohio State _ on April 6 in the Georgia Dome. The Blue Devils beat Ohio State 73-68 on Nov. 28 in Durham.

  • SportsMore>>

  • No. 23 Tar Heels beat Flames 56-29 in opener

    No. 23 Tar Heels beat Flames 56-29 in opener

    Sunday, August 31 2014 5:33 AM EDT2014-08-31 09:33:08 GMT
    Marquise Williams accounted for four touchdowns while Jeff Schoettmer returned an interception for a score during North Carolina's game-turning flurry, helping the No. 23 Tar Heels beat Liberty 56-29 on Saturday night.
    Marquise Williams accounted for four touchdowns while Jeff Schoettmer returned an interception for a score during North Carolina's game-turning flurry, helping the No. 23 Tar Heels beat Liberty 56-29 on Saturday night.
  • Sam cut from Rams, but may still have NFL future

    Sam cut from Rams, but may still have NFL future

    Saturday, August 30 2014 8:00 PM EDT2014-08-31 00:00:41 GMT
    The St. Louis Rams have cut Michael Sam, the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team.
    Not long after Michael Sam waved to an adoring crowd at Missouri's season opener, he looked down at his cell phone.
  • Panthers trim roster to 53 players

    Panthers trim roster to 53 players

    Saturday, August 30 2014 6:48 PM EDT2014-08-30 22:48:58 GMT
    Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will enter the season with a new group of wide receivers.
    Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will enter the season with a new group of wide receivers.
Powered by WorldNow

WSLS 10, P.O. Box 10
Roanoke, VA 24022-0010

Telephone: 540.981.9110
Fax: 540.343.3157
Email: news@wsls.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.