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Duke guard Gerald Henderson drives past Texas center Dexter Pittman on Saturday. Duke advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2006 with the victory. - AP

Duke hooks Longhorns

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Jon Scheyer was falling out of bounds when he made a heady play to keep one loose ball alive. David McClure tipped another one to a teammate to deny Texas a last chance.

Because Duke is doing all the little things right, some of the biggest things remain very real possibilities.

The Blue Devils made every clutch play in their 74-69 victory over the Longhorns on Saturday night in the East Regional, propelling them into the second weekend of the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2006.

"Kind of a theme of our team is the role-playing guys. ... They've done a great job over the last couple of weeks of making the (difficult) plays," forward Kyle Singler said. "Just the little things that might go unnoticed. And those are the types of plays that they make."

Gerald Henderson scored 24 points and hit three free throws in the final minute, Singler added 17 points before fouling out late and Scheyer added 13 for the second-seeded Blue Devils (30-6). The Atlantic Coast Conference tournament champs and winners of five straight will face third-seeded Villanova (28-7) on Thursday night in Boston.

"These last two weekends have been so gratifying to me, because it's a culmination of a lot of work and commitment," coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "I've been a part of a bunch of championships — ACC, Final Fours, national championships. But to do it with this group feels great."

A.J. Abrams scored 17 points on 5-for-13 shooting for the No. 7 seed Longhorns (23-12), who rallied from a late 10-point deficit to tie it twice in the final 2 minutes — the last time coming when Gary Johnson's free throw with 1:07 remaining made it 69-all.

"We told our guys we would stick around ... and actually told them at 4 minutes we were right where we needed to be," Texas coach Rick Barnes said. "At no point in time did our guys really flinch and think they couldn't get back in the game."

Nolan Smith hit two free throws with 47 seconds left to put Duke up 71-69, and the Longhorns missed two chances in the final 40 seconds to tie it.

Damion James' 3-pointer over Henderson circled the rim and popped out. After Henderson added a free throw with 30.8 seconds left, Abrams missed a runner and James couldn't convert the follow-up. Then, as the rebound squirted toward the Texas bench, Scheyer went all-out to chase it down and hurl it down the floor to Elliot Williams.

"Those are plays that you think of Magic Johnson making," Krzyzewski said before turning to Scheyer and adding: "You never thought I'd compare you to Magic Johnson, right?"

Williams, a high-energy freshman, missed two free throws with 11.5 seconds left, and the rebound bounced off a Longhorn's fingers before McClure tipped it to Henderson, who pumped his fist as he hit the floor, then hit two foul shots with 7.2 seconds remaining to seal it.

Smith finished with 11 points for the Blue Devils, who shot 43 percent. They overcame the Longhorns' 50 percent shooting performance by forcing 15 turnovers and improved to 12-0 in NCAA tournament games at the Greensboro Coliseum — where their two most recent national title runs have started.

Now it's up to Henderson — a junior whose only previous NCAA tournament experiences have ended after one or two games — to keep the Blue Devils on a path toward another one.

It was clear that Duke's offensive game plan was almost exclusively Henderson. The swingman was 7-for-21 shooting while attacking the rim with regularity, drawing contact and knocking down 10-of-13 free throws.

"Down the stretch, I just rode him — we were going to sink or swim with him," Krzyzewski said. "We're swimming."

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