WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) -- Ryan Kelly scored a career-high 23 points and No. 4 Duke held on to beat Wake Forest 79-71 on Tuesday night for its seventh straight win.
Kelly put up 20 points against the Demon Deacons for the third straight time, and Seth Curry finished with 15 points for the Blue Devils (26-4, 13-2 Atlantic Coast Conference).
Duke led by 23 points with 9 1/2 minutes left before Wake Forest made things tense late.
Nikita Mescheriakov and Tony Chennault both had 18 points for the Demon Deacons (13-16, 4-11). Their best chance came when they had the ball down 72-66 with less than 2 minutes left.
But after Chennault missed a 3-pointer, Duke milked the shot clock and Miles Plumlee chased down the critical offensive rebound of Tyler Thornton's missed jumper with just over 1 minute left. Curry hit two free throws with 48.9 seconds left to make it 74-66.