Duke crowned national champs|Win thriller over Cinderella Butler

Published 9:17 am Tuesday, April 6, 2010

By By Associated Press
By Associated Press
INDIANAPOLIS —The too-perfect basketball story with the too-perfect ending is still available on DVD. The real celebration for the new national champion – that’s taking place on Tobacco Road.
Kyle Singler scored 19 points and Brian Zoubek rebounded Gordon Hayward’s miss with 3.6 seconds left Monday night to help Duke beat Butler 61-59, ending the tiny underdog’s try for a “Hoosiers” sequel one win short of the Hollywood ending.
The Blue Devils (35-5) snapped Butler’s 25-game winning streak and brought the long-awaited fourth national title back home to Carolina and the Cameron Crazies.
The “Big Three” – Singler, Jon Scheyer and Nolan Smith – won the Big One for coach Mike Krzyzewski, his first championship since 2001 and the fourth overall, tying Coach K with Adolph Rupp for second place on the all-time list.
Nobody figured this would be easy, and it wasn’t – no way that was going to happen against Butler, the 4,200-student private school that turned the tournament upside down and drove 5.6 miles from its historic home, Hinkle Fieldhouse, to the Final Four.
Butler (33-5) shaved a five-point deficit to one and had a chance to win it, when its best player, Hayward, took the ball at the top of the key, spun and worked his way to the baseline, but was forced to put up an off-balance fadeaway from 15 feet.
He missed, Zoubek got the rebound and made the first of two free throws. He missed the second one intentionally, and Duke’s title wasn’t secure until Hayward’s desperation heave from halfcourt went off glass, hit the rim and bounded out.
What a game to end one of the most memorable tournaments in history.