Duke improved to 13-1 on the season and posted two season-defining wins in the last week over NC State and Louisville in earning NCAA.com Team of the Week honors. The Blue Devils opened Atlantic Coast Conference play with three consecutive wins for the first time since 2013-14, when the team won its first eight ACC games.
On Dec. 29, Duke went on the road and into Reynolds Coliseum and rolled to a convincing 72-58 win over No. 6 NC State as senior guard Celeste Taylor poured in a season-high 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Taylor shot 50 percent from the field and drilled five of her six 3-point field goal attempts, also going 4-of-4 at the free throw line. Elizabeth Balogun also had a strong performance for the Blue Devils as the senior tallied 16 points, connecting on all six of her field goal attempts, to go along with seven boards and three blocks.
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On New Year’s Day, Duke started the 2023 portion of its schedule with a bang while picking up another statement victory in a 63-56 home win over Louisville. Balogun registered her fourth career double-double and ninth career game of at least 20 points, finishing the game with season highs of 20 points and 10 rebounds to lead the charge for Duke. Shayeann Day-Wilson added 12 points, which included going a perfect 6-of-6 showing at the foul line, while Taylor rounded out the double-figure scoring for Duke with 11 points. With the win, Duke snapped a five-game losing streak to the Cardinals.
Two close games in four days.— Duke Women’s Basketball (@DukeWBB) January 2, 2023
Sights set on Thursday next. pic.twitter.com/FLdOsRykQ6
Duke has been led by a strong defense through the first 14 games, holding each of its opponents below their season scoring average, with Louisville's 56 points 22 below its 30th-ranked season average of 78.2. Duke's lone loss this season was in November at the Phil Knight Legacy tournament to UConn.
The Blue Devils return to action on January 5 at Wake Forest.