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Huge Win for Miami Basketball: 'Canes Crush Duke at Cameron 90-74

The Miami Hurricanes play BIG, and hand Duke their second straight conference loss, in a win for the ages.

Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Angel Rodriguez looked the best player on the floor with 24 points, 5 assists, and 5 steals and Miami looked like the best team, as UM handed #4 Duke and their star center Jahlil Okafor their second straight loss 90-74 in a sensational performance by Jim Larranaga's squad.

A nice set up by Rodriguez led to an Omar Sherman 3 and the game's opening points.

Miami looked anything but over matched early as they focused on penetrating and dishing on the offensive end, and double and triple teaming Okafor on the defensive end.

The Duke big man nonetheless managed 5 of Duke's first 6 points.

But it was a pair of Sheldon McClellan athletic finishes and an amazing one-handed flush by JaQuan Newton  that spurred an early 14-10 lead.

Duke however responded, going inside time and time again, and taking their first lead a few minutes later on an inside bucket by Amile Jefferson.

At this point, it looked as though Duke would take control of the game. But Rodriguez brought back memories of the UF game, and  went on a personal 8 point spurt to give the 'Canes back the lead at 26-24 with 7 minutes left in the half.

And that is how the first half went.  Each team took turns making runs behind spirited play, as there were no shortage of floor burns on either side, but each also missed opportunities as well (Miami missed 6 first half FTs, Duke 5).

Miami hung tough but trailed, 35-34 after the first 20 minutes.

Okafor had 9 for the Devils, Jefferson added 8 points and 7 rebounds.

Rodriguez played an intense opening period and led the way for UM with 9 points and 3 assists.

The second half started out fast paced, with the Devils really ratcheting up the intensity early on, as Jefferson dominated the paint.

But Manu Lecomte nailed a three in transition to retake the lead for the 'Canes, who refused to back down

The 'Canes had all of the answers in the second half and played exceptional half court defense over the game's final 20 minutes.

Rodriguez and Quinn Cook traded triples as the pace picked back up, and UM held a 4 point lead at the 13 minute mark.

UM kept attacking though, and it payed off with a 9-0 run sparked by another Lecomte triple and a pair on inside buckets by Tonye Jekiri and Omar Sherman to increase the lead to double digits, 57-46, forcing Coach K to call a time out.

Duke responded initially to cut the lead to 7, but McClellan nailed a triple, and got loose for a breakaway that should have resulted in a flagrant 2 on Justise Winslow, but incredibly only a normal foul was called.

The big break helped keep the Devils close temporarily, but Rodriguez nailed another triple  to increase the lead back to a dozen with 7 minutes to go, and another triple by Sherman a minute later would make it 69-54.

The Hurricanes could smell the victory.

Lecomte kept making plays to stymie any comeback attempts, and he would finish the game with 23 huge points.

Rodriguez put the exclamation point on the game with a pair of steals, the second culminating in a monster dunk for McClellan to close it out.

And suddenly the 2014-15 Miami Hurricanes basketball team had a win that puts them right in the thick of the ACC race.  A win that might just change everything for this team.

Jim Larranaga is now 3-2 Vs Duke since taking the helm at UM.

Much more on this game coming right here on SOTU.