California's victory sends Duke, Hurley into history NCAA TOURNAMENT

March 22, 1993|By Don Markus | Don Markus,Staff Writer

ROSEMONT, Ill. -- As the final seconds ticked away Saturday night at the Rosemont Horizon, as it became increasingly apparent that Duke's chances for a three-peat had vanished, Bobby Hurley didn't know what to do.

He stood at the end of the court, with a look on his face that hadn't been there for nearly three years, when the Blue Devils last lost an NCAA tournament game -- to Nevada-Las Vegas for the 1990 championship.

But this was different. This time, Bobby Hurley wasn't coming back.

"I just really didn't know how to react," Hurley said in the Duke locker room, as the impact of his team's 82-77 upset loss to upstart Cal in the second round of the Midwest Regional began to sink in. "Whether I should stay or watch. I didn't know what to do. I was a little bit lost for a second."

After keeping the third-seeded Blue Devils from a blowout in the first half, after leading them from an 18-point deficit early in the second half to take the lead with a little less than 2 1/2 minutes left, Hurley ran out of the high-octane stuff that fueled Duke's comeback.

He missed his last five shots in a courageous and, at times, spellbinding 32-point, nine-assist, 40-minute performance.

"I have no regrets," Hurley said.

But the comeback from deficits of 55-37 with 18 minutes left and from 70-53 less than five minutes later made the loss more palatable for Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski and his players.

"I don't think people will remember the fact that we lost," Krzyzewski said. "I think they'll remember the comeback."

It was a difficult moment for Krzyzewski. Not that his team lost, or that he would be denied a chance to become the only coach aside from John Wooden to win three straight championships. This was personal, having to do with his relationship with Hurley.

Four years ago, Krzyzewski handed the reins of his team to a scared 18-year-old gym rat from Jersey City who was thought by many to be overrated. Hurley delivered two national championships and more assists than any point guard in history, becoming one of the best players in the history of the Atlantic Coast Conference.

"Bobby had a storybook career, and I was glad to be part of the story," said Krzyzewski, who broke down at his team's press conference. "What makes me sad is that I'm not going to get Bobby again. I hope whoever coaches him next is as lucky as I am."

Hurley said: "I've been very fortunate to have played with so many great players at Duke. As I've said before, I don't think I'll enjoy playing anywhere else as much as I have at Duke."

The Bears showed their respect for the Blue Devils. In the final seconds, freshman guard Jerod Haase walked over to the Duke star and shook his hand.

"I told him what a great player he was, what a class act," said Haase, whose three-point shooting off the bench helped Cal as much as did Lamond Murray's 28 points or Kidd's 11 points and school-record 14 assists. "It was an honor to play in Bobby Hurley's last college game."

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