Freshman center Jahlil Okafor proved to be too much for Toledo to handle on Monday evening in the Rockets’ 86-69 setback at No. 2 Duke.The Rockets’ senior trio of guard Julius Brown (19 points), guard Justin Drummond (14 points) and forward J.D. Weatherspoon (14 points and team-high eight rebounds) paced the Rockets’ offense.
Sophomore guard Jonathan Williams also was in double figures with 10 points. Junior center Nathan Boothe tallied nine points but played just 21 minutes due to foul trouble.
Okafor topped Duke offensively with a season-high 27 points on 12 of 15 shooting, while senior guard Quinn Cook posted a season-best 20 points.
After falling behind by 14 points early in the contest, Toledo connected on 13 of 15 shots over a nine-and-a-half-minute span to cut the Blue Devils’ lead to 47-44 approximately 90 seconds into the second half.
Okafor ignited a decisive 21-9 run by scoring seven straight points that put Duke up 68-53 with just over nine minutes remaining.
The contest was played at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, N.C., and televised on ESPN2.
Toledo will return to action Saturday, Jan. 3, with a trip to Highland Heights, Ky., for its final non-conference contest at Northern Kentucky (6-7). Tip-off time is set for 4 p.m.