GAME NOTES: The Wake Forest Demon Deacons shocked a top-5 team earlier in the week, and this afternoon they'll close out the regular season against the Miami Hurricanes in an Atlantic Coast Conference tussle at BankUnited Center.
Wake Forest rallied to beat fourth-ranked Duke in its final home game on Wednesday night, 82-72. That upset seemingly came out of nowhere, considering the Demon Deacons had lost eight of their previous nine games. However, they have notched only two victories in 12 tries outside of Winston-Salem this season.
Miami is coming off a 58-54 setback at Clemson on Tuesday night. The Hurricanes have hovered around .500 throughout the season, and they actually boast a slightly better road record (7-6) than at home (7-8).
Wake Forest holds a 9-6 lead in the all-time series with Miami.
Duke led Wake Forest by as many as seven points with less than six minutes to play in Wednesday's game. However, the Demon Deacons completely took over down the stretch with a 17-0 run over the final five minutes. They stepped up defensively and held the Blue Devils scoreless on 11 straight possessions during that decisive run. Tyler Cavanaugh finished with a career-high 20 points off the bench to pace five double-digit scorers for the Deacs. Travis McKie (11.4 ppg) added 19 points, while Codi Miller-McIntyre (13.3 ppg) scored 13 and dished out a game-high eight assists. Wake held Duke to 22 percent shooting from beyond the arc, well off its season average of around 40 percent.
For Miami, Rion Brown leads the way in scoring (15.2 ppg), rebounding (6.0 rpg), free throws made (89-of-118), 3-pointers made (58-of-176) and minutes played (35.1 mpg). Garrius Adams has also logged plenty of minutes (33.4 per game) and is averaging 10.0 points and 4.7 rebounds per tilt, although he is shooting just 35.7 percent from the floor. Defense is the name of the game for the Hurricanes, who rank 11th nationally in scoring defense (59.7). They shot 50 percent from the floor while holding Clemson to 58 points earlier this week. However, Miami made only two 3-pointers (.167) and two free throws (.250) for the game and was outrebounded by a 31-23 margin. Brown led the way with 21 points, while Erik Swoope scored 14 on 7-of-10 shooting.
The Demon Deacons are coming off their biggest win of the season, but can they replicate the kind of intensity they put forth late in that game? Miami has shown a real knack for thwarting what opponents want to try and do on offense.
Game Date and Time