DURHAM, N.C. -- Seth Curry pulled up in transition, knocked down a 3-pointer and then flashed that familiar, babyfaced grin.
In other words, he looked a lot like his famous big brother.
"You're hitting big shots, you're having fun out there," Curry said. "It's hard not to show it."
Curry scored a season-high 20 points in his return to Duke's starting lineup, leading the third-ranked Blue Devils past Boston College 84-68 on Thursday night.
Nolan Smith finished with 28 points while Kyle Singler had 14 for the Blue Devils (19-1, 6-1 Atlantic Coast Conference), who shot 50 percent from the field, hit 10 3-pointers and used a huge Curry-led run early in the second half to claim their fourth straight win.
"When I penetrate, defenses can't leave the corner or leave the wings," Smith said. "That basically gives me a one-on-one drive to the basket. [His teammates] are going to continue to hit shots and just make it easy."
The expected duel between the ACC's top two scorers never materialized. Reggie Jackson, who entered second to Smith in the league scoring race, finished with a season-low seven points -- 13 fewer than his average.
"We didn't do anything on the defensive end," Jackson said. "We let them get good looks, and even when we did get stops, we didn't box out and they had too many offensive boards. We have to tighten things up and figure out a way to stop people."
Ryan Kelly added 14 points for Duke, but his streak of consecutive shots made ended at 18 when he missed a follow-up early in the second half -- his first miss in nearly two weeks, since the first half against Virginia.
On this night, Duke's hottest hand belonged to Curry.
The younger brother of Golden State's Stephen Curry and son of former NBA star Dell Curry sat out last season after transferring from Liberty. Curry made just his fifth start for the Blue Devils and his first since they were upset two weeks ago at Florida State.
It wound up being his best day in a Duke uniform. Curry -- who entered 3 of 18 from 3-point range in ACC games -- finished 6 of 9 from the field, hit a season-best five 3-pointers and scored 11 points during the 26-9 burst that put the Blue Devils in command.
"Even though he hasn't shot the ball well until tonight in the ACC, his play has gotten better," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "We've seen him growing. The thing that you would expect from him -- to shoot -- he wasn't doing that. That's going to come as he gets into that, it's not just physical shape, it's the shape of playing a game like that, what level of concentration you need to have when you're doing all these other things."
After Cortney Dunn's layup pulled BC to 43-38 with 17:53 left, Curry found his stroke. He bookended the decisive run with 3s, starting it by connecting from the right corner seconds later, and capping it by hitting from the right wing at the 10-minute mark to stretch the lead to 69-47. In between was Curry's signature shot of the night, a 3 in transition followed by a big smile toward the Cameron Crazies.
"You look at his last name and you know his bloodlines," Jackson said. "He's a great shooter. Basically, they have seven guys any night who can go get you 20. Everybody can hurt you. We obviously let him get going, and then everybody else fed off that."
Smith, who entered averaging 22.5 points and is bidding to become the first player in ACC history to lead the league in both scoring and assists, had eight assists while hitting the 20-point mark for the ACC-best 10th time this season. He helped the Blue Devils win their 31st straight at Cameron, a string that includes 14 ACC games.
With Smith guarding him for much of the game, Jackson couldn't come close to matching him.
BC coach Steve Donahue said he didn't start Jackson and Danny Rubin because Dallas Elmore and Raji earned those spots during practice. Jackson came off the bench about 5½ minutes in, went roughly 20 minutes between field goals, finished 3 of 11 from the field and missed all four of his 3-point attempts. He declined comment when asked how his game was affected by coming off the bench.
Shutting him down "was definitely a team credit," Smith said. "Heading into the game, I definitely took it personal because he's been great all year, scoring and assists, and I really just wanted to make it a personal [battle] to try and hold him down. ... Everybody who got switched on him, we just had a great team focus to try and stop him."
Biko Paris scored 11 points and Elmore matched a career high with 10 points for the Eagles.