Brian Zoubek scored a game-high 18 points as 12th-ranked Duke earned an 86-43 season-opening victory over Columbia in the first round of the CBE Classic in Cameron Indoor Stadium on Sunday night.DURHAM, N.C. - Freshman center
The Blue Devils advance to meet Georgia Southern on Monday at 7 p.m. (ESPN2) while the Lions will face UC Davis in a consolation tilt tomorrow at 4 p.m. Georiga Southern picked up a 116-73 victory over UC Davis earlier on Sunday.
Columbia went ahead 3-0 on a three-point bucket by Brett Loscalzo at the 19:19 mark of the opening half, but Jon Scheyer responded with a trey of his own just 14 seconds later. A steal and layup by DeMarcus Nelson then gave the Blue Devils a 5-3 advantage and Duke would never trail again.
Justin Armstrong's jump shot with 15:54 remaining in the first half pulled Columbia within 11-10, but Duke used a 9-0 run to take a 20-10 lead on Zoubek's two free throws at the 12:43 mark. Scheyer connected on four-of-five three-point attempts for 12 first half points as the Blue Devils enjoyed a 46-24 cushion at intermission.
Zoubek connected on four-of-seven field goals and 10-of-13 free throws and added six rebounds and one blocked shot in 14 minutes of action. Fellow rookies Scheyer and Lance Thomas chipped in 12 points each while Nelson had 11 points along with three steals, three blocks and two assists. Josh McRoberts enjoyed a perfect shooting evening, sinking both of his field goal attempts and all four foul shots for eight points. The preseason All-America choice also logged a game-high seven boards, three assists and three blocks.
For Columbia, John Baumann scored a team-high 13 points.