- The Washington Times - Monday, February 2, 2009

From combined dispatches

No. 1 Duke 79, Virginia 54: Gerald Henderson scored 16 of his 18 points in the first half to lead the Blue Devils past the Cavaliers in Durham, N.C., on Sunday.

Nolan Smith added 15 points on 7-for-10 shooting for the first-place Blue Devils (19-2, 6-1 ACC).

They wrapped up what surely will be a one-week run as the nation’s top-ranked team with a dominating effort that helped them bounce back from a loss to Wake Forest.

Jon Scheyer finished with 11 points for Duke - which never trailed, shot 46 percent and forced 23 turnovers - 17 in the first half. And for a while, at least, its tough defense frustrated star freshman Sylven Landesberg in his first visit to Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Landesberg recovered from a rough start and scored 12 of his 20 points in the second half. After turning it over three times on his first six trips downcourt, he wound up leading the Cavaliers in scoring for the 11th time in 20 games while hitting the 20-point mark for the 10th time - the most by a freshman in school history.

Mike Scott added 10 points for Virginia (7-10, 1-5), which lost its fifth straight and hasn’t won an ACC game since the start of 2009.

Penn State 72, No. 9 Michigan State 68: Talor Battle scored a career-high 29 points, and Jamelle Cornley had 16 to lead the Nittany Lions to a victory over the Spartans in East Lansing, Mich.

Battle was 11-for-19 from the field and 6-for-12 from 3-point range as Ed DeChellis’ team shot 56.3 percent from the field.

Battle was just 1-for-5 at the foul line, however, as the Nittany Lions nearly gave the game back.

It was the first win in 17 trips to East Lansing for Penn State (17-5, 6-3 Big Ten) and its first four-game conference win streak since 1996.

Kalin Lucas had 23 points but missed a tying free throw and jump shot in the final 12 seconds for the Spartans (17-4, 7-2), who played without virus-plagued Raymar Morgan for 37 minutes and fell into a first-place tie with Purdue in the Big Ten.

No. 19 Illinois 62, Iowa 54: Mike Tisdale scored 18 points, and the Fighting Illini rebounded from their worst offensive showing in more than two decades by hanging on to beat the Hawkeyes in Champaign, Ill.

Held to their lowest point total in 24 years in a 59-36 loss at Minnesota on Thursday, the Illini barely beat the Big Ten’s 10th place team.

A 3-pointer by Jeff Peterson with 18 seconds left pulled Iowa within 58-54, but Tisdale and Mike Davis each hit two free throws as the Illini (18-4, 6-3 Big Ten) sent the Hawkeyes (12-10, 2-7) to their sixth loss in seven games. Illinois is trying to build some momentum for the postseason, and it simply couldn’t afford to stumble again after that miserable showing against Minnesota.

No. 21 Villanova 71, Cincinnati 50: Dante Cunningham scored 12 of his 21 points in the second half, leading the Wildcats to a Big East win over the Bearcats in Villanova, Pa.

His output helped the Wildcats sprint away from a surprisingly slim 30-29 halftime lead and led to the 25th straight victory at the Pavilion, their on-campus homecourt.

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