Linebackers Van Richardson and Matt Smith sacked Duke quarterback Steve Slayden on an attempted two-point conversion pass with 29 seconds remaining yesterday in Morgantown, W.Va., as West Virginia withstood two fourth-quarter touchdowns to beat the Blue Devils, 20-18.

Fullback Tracy Smith plunged in for a two-yard touchdown, capping a 71-yard drive, to move the Blue Devils within two points. Slayden then rolled left and was tackled at the 13-yard line by Richardson and Smith as the Mountaineers moved their record to 2-0. Duke fell to 1-1.

Trailing, 17-6, after three quarters, the Blue Devils drove 61 yards, scoring on Smith's two-yard run with 10:38 to go to make it 17-12. West Virginia then chewed up nearly seven minutes with a drive that ended on Charlie Baumann's 30-yard field goal with 3:50 left,

The Blue Devils rallied one last time as Slayden passed to Chuck Herring for 15 yards and carried for 16 on a keeper. Smith, who also had a 16-yard run to move the ball to the West Virginia 11, scored on a fourth and one at the West Virginia two-yard line with 29 seconds to go.