DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — No. 9 Duke found all sorts of firepower and even a spark from its head coach Friday night.
Mark Mitchell scored a career-high 20 points and the Blue Devils rolled past Bucknell 90-60, picking up the pace after second-year coach Jon Scheyer’s first technical foul.
Mitchell, a sophomore forward, shot 8 of 13 from the field. He was one of five Blue Devils with at least one 3-pointer.
“We have a lot of scoring firepower on the team,” Mitchell said. “It was the way the game evolved.”
Jared McCain made five 3s on the way to 17 points. Tyrese Proctor had 13 points and Kyle Filipowski added 10 for Duke (3-1).
Jack Forrest had 17 points and Ruot Bijiek scored 11 to pace Bucknell (1-4), which played its fourth road game in 10 days.
Duke shot 38.2% on 3-pointers (13 for 34), while Bucknell was at 37% on all attempts from the field.
“I would say in preparing for an opponent like Duke, you have to talk about their transition and physically and then talk about the scheme,” Bucknell coach John Griffin III said. “We’ll take a lot of positives from this.”
Scheyer, who replaced Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski in the spring of 2022, was assessed his first technical foul less than eight minutes into the game. It was the 500th game for Scheyer at Duke as either a player or member of the coaching staff.
“I wanted to have something that’s memorable,” Scheyer joked about the milestone game. “I can always go to bat for my guys.”
The mild-mannered Scheyer said he never recalled getting a technical as a player.
Duke led 19-9 at the time of the whistle, coming as Scheyer disputed a non-call or two on Duke’s offensive end. The Blue Devils then went on an 8-0 spurt to build a 29-19 lead.
“I think he was standing up for us,” Mitchell said.
Filipowski, a preseason All-American, left with 4:04 to play in the first half with an ankle injury but was back to begin the second half.
Four players scored during an 11-0 run to end the first half that gave Duke a 44-29 lead at the break. The Blue Devils got 3-pointers from Proctor, Jeremy Roach and McCain early in the second half for a 55-33 advantage.
“It gives me confidence,” McCain said of the long-range shooting. “Just trying to find my shot. I work on those shots all the time.”
Forrest scored 15 of Bucknell’s first 24 points, hitting three 3s.
“I think he just wore down a little bit,” Griffin said. “I thought he got good looks. These are the types of atmospheres we need to be consistent in the second half, so this is a great experience for him.”
Bucknell: The inability to sustain offense became an issue again for a team that’s shooting barely above 40% from the field this season. … It was the first meeting with Duke in 18 seasons. Griffin, now in his first season as coach, scored five points for the Bison in that one.
Duke: The Blue Devils were too much for Bucknell inside, outscoring the Bison 23-0 in second-chance points. It was Duke’s first home game since a loss to Arizona a week earlier, and it came three nights after the Blue Devils beat Michigan State in Chicago.
“For me, it’s about developing habits, playing the same way all the time,” Scheyer said. “This was another good step.”
Bucknell: Monday night at home vs. Southern Indiana.
Duke: Tuesday night at home vs. La Salle.
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