LAHAINA, Hawaii (AP) — The Latest on the Maui Invitational (all times local):
R.J. Barrett and Cam Reddish scored 18 points each, and top-ranked Duke survived its stiffest challenge of the season, holding off No. 8 Auburn 78-72 Tuesday night to reach the Maui Invitational title game.
The Blue Devils (5-0) got off to another stellar start, looking as if they run another top-10 team out of the gym.
The Tigers (4-1) clawed back, trimming a 17-point deficit to 61-56 in the second half by fearlessly attacking Duke at both ends.
But every time Auburn tried to get closer, the Blue Devils answered with an alley-oop dunk or step-back jumper.
Duke will play No. 3 Gonzaga or Arizona Wednesday night for a chance at an unprecedented sixth Maui Invitational title.
Marques Bolden anchored Duke’s defense, blocking seven shots while finishing with 11 points and nine rebounds. The Blue Devils blocked 11 shots overall.
Jared Harper had 22 points and Bryce Brown 16 for Auburn.
Talen Horton-Tucker had 26 points and 14 rebounds, Michael Jacobson added 23 points and Iowa State ran away from Illinois in the second half for an 84-68 victory Tuesday in the Maui Invitational.
Down to eight scholarship players due to injuries and suspensions, Iowa State (4-1) bounced back from an opening loss to No. 3 Gonzaga with a strong game at both ends.
The Cyclones used their pressure defense to keep it close in the first half, then went on an 18-2 run early in the second to build a nine-point lead. Iowa State kept boosting the lead from there, making 16 of 28 shots to earn a spot in Wednesday’s fifth-place game against San Diego State.
Trent Frazier had 15 points to lead Illinois (1-3), which will face Xavier in the seventh-place game.
Jalen McDaniels scored 25 points, Devin Watson added 21 and San Diego State held off Xavier 79-74 on Tuesday to earn a spot in the Maui Invitational fifth-place game.
San Diego State (3-1) was blown out by top-ranked Duke in its Maui opener and fell behind by 19 early against Xavier (2-3). The Aztecs answered with a 19-3 run to pull within three by halftime and had an early 16-2 run in the second half to go up 58-49.
Xavier took No. 8 Auburn to overtime in its Maui opener and rallied against San Diego State, pulling within 64-63 with three minutes left.
The Aztecs pushed the lead back to six and hit 10 of 12 free throws in the final 47 seconds to face the winner between Iowa State and Illinois on Wednesday
Quentin Goodin led Xavier with 20 points.
The second day of the Maui Invitational kicks off with loser’s bracket games between Xavier and San Diego State, Iowa State and Illinois.
The marquee games come later.
Top-ranked Duke will put its undefeated Maui Invitational record on the line when it faces No. 8 Auburn in the semifinals. The five-time champion Blue Devils routed San Diego State in their opener.
The Tigers knocked off Xavier.
The nightcap features two of the West’s top teams: No. 3 Gonzaga against Arizona.
The Zags had a hard time deciphering Illinois’ constant pressure to win their opener, while the Wildcats needed 30 minutes to find themselves in beating Iowa State.
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