NC State (11-5) at Wake Forest (11-5)

The Sports NetworkJanuary 15, 2014 

GAME NOTES: One of the most frequently played rivalries in the ACC adds another chapter on Wednesday evening, as the Wake Forest Demon Deacons play host to the NC State Wolfpack.

This game marks the 238th all-time meeting between these two local rivals as the series represents the second-most played rivalry in the conference. The Wolfpack hold a 137-100 all-time lead over the Demon Deacons, but Wake has won six of the last nine meetings. These two teams have played at least twice a season since 1915-1916.

Jeff Bzdelik's Demon Deacons are a solid 11-5 on the year. The team has struggled of late in league play, entering this contest off of back-to-back road losses at Virginia (74-51) and Pittsburgh (80-65), but returns to Winston-Salem, where the team is a sterling 10-0 this year.

Mark Gottfried's Wolfpack are also sporting an 11-5 overall mark, as well as a 1-2 conference record. NC State was humbled at home this past weekend by Virginia, in a lopsided 76-45 loss. Still, NC State has played well on the road this season, with three wins in four true road games thus far.

The Wolfpack are paced by the ACC's leading scorer T.J. Warren. The 6-foot-8 sophomore is shooting an efficient .505 from the floor, en route to 22.2 ppg. Warren is also a playmaker at the other end of the floor as well, leading NC State in rebounding (7.5 rpg) and steals (25). Freshman Anthony Barber (11.7 ppg, team-high 4.3 apg) and junior Desmond Lee (10.4 ppg) are an effective backcourt duo. Ralston Turner (89.2 ppg) adds some punch off the bench for the most part, but there is little depth behind him for NC State, which averages a modest 72.7 ppg on the year.

Warren was completely baffled by Virginia's staunch defense last time out and suffered his worst game of the season, going 1-of-9 from the floor and finishing with a mere four points, as NC State had its worst offensive outing this year. Warren wasn't the only player for NC State to struggle, as the team shot an ugly .389 from the floor overall, including just 2-of-10 from behind the arc. Lee and Turner were able to reach double figures in the loss, with 10 points each.

The Demon Deacons had their own problems in their last game, as they were no match for newcomer Pittsburgh on the road. Wake Forest was outrebounded 38-28 in the game and shot just .392 from the floor. Forward Devin Thomas led the team in defeat, just missing a double-double with 17 points and nine rebounds. Guards Codi-Miller-McIntyre and Coron Williams added 10 points each.

Wake Forest has similar numbers to NC State in terms of overall offensive efficiency. The team is shooting .444 from the field overall, leading to 73.2 ppg. The Demon Deacons enjoy a +5.1 scoring margin, as well as a +3.3 rebounding edge, while grabbing 40.2 caroms per game. Miller-McIntyre is both the team's top scorer (15.6 ppg) and distributor (3.9 apg). Thomas has been a force in the frontcourt with 11.1 points and 8.9 rebounds per game. Williams is the team's sniper of choice, posting 10.3 ppg, while pacing Wake with 38 3- pointers, on 41.8 percent accuracy from long range.

The Wolfpack have traveled well for the most part this season, while Wake has proved to be unbeatable at home. The friendly confines of the LJVM Coliseum should be enough to tip the scales in the Wake's favor.

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