East Regional

March 24, 2000|By Kent Baker

Tonight's semifinals

No. 1 Duke (29-4) vs. No. 5 Florida (26-7)

Site: Syracuse, N.Y.

Time: 7: 38

TV: Chs. 13, 9

Line: Duke by 4 1/2

Conference records: Duke won the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season with a 15-1 record and the ACC tournament. Florida was 12-4 in the Southeastern Conference and shared the title. The Gators lost to Auburn in the SEC tournament.

Coaches: Mike Krzyzewski is 500-159 in 20 seasons at Duke and 573-218 overall; Billy Donovan is 77-48 in four seasons at Florida and 112-68 overall.

Starting lineups: Duke: PG Jason Williams (14.5 ppg, 6.5 apg); G Nate James (10.9 ppg, 4.4 rpg); C Carlos Boozer (13.1 ppg, 6.2 rpg); F Chris Carrawell (17.0 ppg, 6.1 rpg); F Shane Battier (17.4 ppg, 5.5 rpg). Florida: PG Justin Hamilton (4.6 ppg, 1.3 apg); G Teddy Dupay (9.0 ppg, 1.7 rpg); C Udonis Haslem (11.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg); F Mike Miller (14.5 ppg, 6.6 rpg); F Brent Wright 8.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg).

Bench strength: Duke is not an overly deep team, but the recovery of guard Mike Dunleavy (9.3 ppg) from mononucleosis and the availability of forward Matt Christensen, the two key subs, will help. To play his style, Donovan uses 10 players extensively. The major figures off the bench are guard Kenyan Weaks (10.6 ppg) and center Donnell Harvey (10.4 ppg, 7.2 rpg).

Key matchup: Carrawell vs. Miller is one of the most intriguing pairings of the tournament. But the pivotal matchup is Williams -- who has no true backup -- against the Gators' pressure.

What Duke needs to do to win: Break through Florida's relentless trapping often enough to produce easy baskets. And, another 2-for-17 performance from long range -- as happened against Kansas -- probably won't suffice.

What Florida needs to do to win: Keep the heat on Williams and run wave after wave of reserves at the Blue Devils. And, try to prevent Duke from having too great an edge at the free-throw line.

Bottom line: The word around the ACC is that pressing Duke is a futile endeavor. An up-and-down game should suit Krzyzewski's team just fine, but if the threes aren't falling, it could be a long night.

No. 3 Oklahoma State (26-6) vs. No. 10 Seton Hall (22-9)

Site: Syracuse, N.Y.

Time: 9: 55

Line: Oklahoma State by 8

Conference records: Oklahoma State was 12-4, tied for third in Big 12, then lost to Iowa State in the conference tournament. Seton Hall was 10-6, tied for fourth in the Big East, then lost to Connecticut in the conference tournament.

Coaches: Eddie Sutton is 228-94 in 10 seasons at Oklahoma State, 658-258 overall; Tommy Amaker is 52-39 in three seasons, all at Seton Hall.

Starting lineups: Oklahoma State: PG Doug Gottlieb (6.2 ppg, 2.4 apg); G Joe Adkins (11.2 ppg, 3.5 rpg); C Fredrik Jonzen (8.9 ppg, 7.0 ppg); F Desmond Mason (18.3 ppg, 6.8 rpg); F Brian Montonati (12.2 ppg, 7.3 rpg). Seton Hall: PG Ty Shine (7.7 ppg, 1.9 apg); G Rimas Kaukenas (13.2 ppg, 5.1 rpg); G Darius Lane (15.3 ppg, 4.5 rpg); C Samuel Dalembert (6.0 ppg, 5.8 rpg); F Greg Morton (3.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg).

Bench strength: Guard Glendon Alexander, the team's leading three-point threat, and senior forward Alex Webber, a banger, are the major Cowboys on the bench. Freshman forward Andre Williams can also be factor. The loss of guard Gary Saunders (academics) in mid-season and Shaheen Holloway's questionable status severely sap Seton Hall's reserve strength. Freshmen will have to produce in this game.

Key matchup: Gottlieb against Shine. The Cowboys' point man is one of the nation's best at distributing the basketball and will drive to the basket if left uncovered. Shine is in an entirely different role if Holloway can't go and will be required to score heavily.

What Oklahoma State has to do to win: Play sound man-to-man and perimeter defense and run when the opportunities arise to try to wear down the bench-thin Pirates.

What Seton Hall has to do to win: The same thing it did against Temple. Penetrate and kick the ball back out to its bombers, who need another 50 percent efficiency effort. Keeping Dalembert out of foul trouble wouldn't hurt.

Bottom line: The inside players of the Cowboys are greater offensive threats than were Temple's and can run. Mason is one of the nation's better less publicized players. Holloway can provide an inspiration if he plays even a few minutes, but Seton Hall is up against it again.

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