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Another Year, Another Bench Burning

            As Blue Devil fans from all over tuned in, hopes were dashed. At the end of the first half of Saturday’s Duke vs. UNC men’s basketball game, the Tar Heels led by 10 points and that lead crushed the hopes of many fans watching. Shots were missed, passes were intercepted. It seemed like all was lost.

            And then came Marvin Bagley III. With the score 50-43, UNC leading, Bagley’s three-pointer started a chain reaction. And the shots kept coming and UNC’s lead got smaller and smaller. Bagley ended the game with 21 points to his name, senior Grayson Allen with 15 to close out his career in Cameron. The Blue Devils went from losing by 10 points at the end of the first half to winning the game by 10 points, a final score of 74-64. This win meant more than just beating UNC as Duke will now be the No. 2 seed in the ACC tournament (UNC fell to No. 6).

Related: GTHC

via: Sporting News

            Per Duke tradition, a win against UNC at home meant that living groups on West Campus could volunteer their wooden benches to be burned in celebration. The first bench to be burned was the Nexus bench, and hundreds of Duke fans surrounded the burning wooden structure. Chants started up and music was blasted from unknown sources. People were jumping, others were on people’s shoulders, all were having an incredible time.

Related: Game Day Tips

            It only got better when an unmarked bench was brought over and tossed on top, further feeding the flames. The chanting got louder, the cheering got more enthusiastic, and the school spirit increased. Although it may be cliché, class year, major, none of that matter, because, in that moment, we were all just Duke students celebrating a win over our biggest rival. 

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