Zion Williamson suffers eye injury, but No. 1 Duke survives


The best — and most-hyped — college player in the nation survived a scare and so did No. 1 Duke.

With Zion Williamson on the bench in the second half and suffering from double vision after getting poked in the eye, another Duke freshman, Cam Reddish, made all the shots on Saturday — including the game-winner — propelling the Blue Devils to an 80-78 victory over No. 13 Florida State on Saturday in Tallahassee, Fla.

Williamson got hurt when he drove to the basket. Florida State’s Trent Forrest hit the freshman in the face and Williamson landed hard on the court. He stayed down for several moments covering his face. He saw a trainer and went to the locker room just before the half ended. Williamson sat on the bench for the second half, but didn’t play.

He suffered from double vision and sat on the bench in the second half but coach Mike Krzyzewski said it’s possible that Williamson will play in Duke’s next game against Syracuse.

“The good thing – he didn’t have headaches,” Krzyzewski said. “He’s better now. So hopefully he’ll be able to play on Monday. It was a big loss. For this game, are you kidding, especially with the athleticism we’re facing?”

Reddish, a forward, hit a 3-pointer with 0.8 seconds left to clinch the victory for Duke. He caught the ball on the wing off the inbounds pass and made a wide-open 3-pointer to ensure that Duke (14-1, 3-0 ACC) would win its ninth straight game. Two freshmen carried the load for Duke as RJ Barrett scored 32 points on 10 of 19 shooting and Reddish finished with 23 points on 9 of 15 shooting.

“It was great,” said Reddish, who scored 16 second-half points. “I was working really hard to get back to who I was. Trusting God. Praying every day to be who I was. It was a big shot for us. My coaches and teammates have helped me with my confidence. I’m glad I made the shot.”

It was a clutch shot at a critical moment for Duke, which hasn’t had many close games this season and has won 13 of 14 games by 10 or more points. The Blue Devils have just one loss, 89-87 to No. 5 Gonzaga on a neutral court.

Krzyzewski said he wasn’t sure what to expect from the Blue Devils, who were without one of their top players and were facing a top-15 team on the road. Barrett and Reddish “kept us in it,” Krzyzewski said.

“They rose,” Krzyzewski said. “They rose to the different occasion. An occasion that we hadn’t been in this year.”