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Virginia downs Duke for first ACC Tournament title since 1976
Greensboro, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - Malcolm Brogdon had 23 points and No. 6 Virginia beat seventh-ranked Duke 72-63 on Sunday to capture its first ACC Tournament title since 1976.
Joe Harris added 15 points for the Cavaliers (28-6), who avenged a 69-65 loss to Duke on Jan. 13 and were later named a No. 1 seed for the upcoming NCAA Tournament. Anthony Gill tallied 12 points and seven rebounds.
Virginia, which shot 25-of-38 from the foul line, improved to 2-5 all-time in tournament title games.
"To me the true joy is in how they played when the ball was tipped between the lines, how hard they played," Virginia coach Tony Bennett said of his players. "How well they played. ... How they defended, how they moved the ball and tried to outlast through the game. And that's it.
"We'll celebrate all this stuff later on, but that's what I liked, and you want to play good ball now heading into the NCAA Tournament. So it's great. For these guys, who have been through a lot, it's a nice feeling for sure."
Jabari Parker ended with 23 points, eight boards and two steals for the Blue Devils (26-8), who were trying to capture their 20th conference tournament crown. Rodney Hood and Amile Jefferson had 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Duke got a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Holding a 59-57 lead with 2:54 to play, the Cavaliers used a 12-3 run to pull away and claim their second ACC Tournament title in school history.
After Akil Mitchell converted a tip-in and Harris was good from long distance, Quinn Cook drained a trey and it was 64-60 with 1:28 on the clock. Brogdon went on a personal 7-0 spurt -- hitting a jumper and then five consecutive free throws -- to make it 71-60 as 39 seconds remained.
"They were poised," said Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski. "They finished better than we did."
Earlier, Virginia jumped out to leads of 9-2 and 16-7, but the Blue Devils responded with a 12-3 surge to tie the game as Parker was good from beyond the arc with 3:53 left before intermission.
The Cavaliers came back with the next six points to grab a 25-19 margin. London Perrantes capped the flurry with a pair of free throws after Krzyzewski was issued a technical foul for tossing a marker towards his own bench.
Hood's 3-pointer with 58 seconds left got Duke within 28-25 at the half.
The second half was a back-and-forth battle until Virginia's late run. The Cavaliers were only able to expand their lead to four and endured five ties before then.
Virginia opens against Coastal Carolina and Duke will play Mercer in its NCAA Tournament opener ... Virginia beat North Carolina by a 67-62 score to win the ACC in '76 ... Duke leads the all-time series by a 116-50 margin ... Virginia has 28 wins for the first time since winning 29 in 1982-83 ... The Blue Devils fell to 19-12 in ACC Tournament title games ... Duke shot 38.1 percent and went 8-of-14 from beyond the arc.
03/16 18:56:11 ET
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