Demon Deacons' defense paves way for upset of No. 2 Duke
|Wake Forest's Jeff Teague shoots around Duke's Nolan Smith in first half action of a college basketball game in Winston-Salem, N.C., Sunday, Feb. 17, 2008. Wake Forest wins 86-73. (AP Photo/Lynn Hey)|
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|Team Stat Comparison|
|· Feb 17, 2008|| @WAKE 86, DUKE 73||Recap | Box Score|
|Next 5 Games|
||WAKE FOREST (ET)
|02/20 @MIA 9:00pm|
|02/23 SJU 4:00pm|
|02/27 GT 9:00pm|
|03/01 @NCST 12:00pm|
|03/05 @UVA 7:00pm||
|02/24 @UNC 6:30pm|
|02/28 MD 8:00pm|
|03/01 @GT 2:00pm|
|03/04 @VT 7:00pm|
|03/08 NCST 12:00pm|
| · Complete Schedule: Duke | Wake Forest
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) -- Freshmen Jeff Teague and James Johnson showed no fear of Duke. Instead, they helped coach Dino Gaudio claim a victory that surely would have made his late best friend proud.
Teague scored 26 points and the Demon Deacons shocked the No. 2 Blue Devils 86-73 on Sunday night, snapping the Blue Devils' 12-game winning streak and giving the first-year coach his signature victory as the heir of the late Skip Prosser's program.
"I watched them on TV [and] I dreamed about Carolina and Duke," Teague said, adding that he and Johnson "talked about that when we first got here, 'Playing Duke, they're going to pressure you.'
"That's why I want to play. I'm not an All-American or nothing, but I want to go out and try to beat one."
Johnson added 24 points and a personal-best 16 rebounds for the Demon Deacons (16-8, 6-5 Atlantic Coast Conference), who claimed their first victory against a top-5 team since Chris Paul's sophomore season in 2004-05. This time, the tie-dye-clad "Screamin' Demons" student section poured onto the court to celebrate the program's biggest win since they knocked off the then-No. 4 Blue Devils on Feb. 2, 2005.
The Demon Deacons' third straight victory improved them to 14-1 on their home court and snapped a five-game losing streak in the series. They did it on the strength of a 17-2 run midway through the second half and some smothering defense, forcing Duke into a season-high 22 turnovers.
"[Teague] did a great job on defense, but I think it was just us not being as aggressive as we've been all year, taking the right shots, and just passing up a lot of shots that we should have taken, and second-guessing ourselves early," freshman Nolan Smith
said. "Lackadaiscial turnovers, out of bounds, that's what happens."
The Blue Devils (22-2, 10-1) entered this one only a one-point overtime loss to Pittsburgh away from a perfect record, and had won their previous 12 games by an average of 14.3 points.
But this time, the Demon Deacons held Mike Krzyzewski's team without a field goal for more than 7 minutes in building the first double-figure lead of the game for either team, with Teague's three-point play with 4:58 left making it 72-62.
After Kyle Singler
's layup at the 11:20 mark gave the Blue Devils their largest lead of the half at 60-55, they missed 11 consecutive shots before Paulus ended the drought with a 3 with just over 4 minutes left. They didn't get closer than six points the rest of the way.
"Tonight, we played like we've already done something, and the team that had to win won," Krzyzewski said. "We have to always play like we have to win. That's the sign of a champion. That's a part of learning. We have some young guys who haven't been champions before, and they're trying to learn how to be that. Sometimes the best lessons are ones that are taught in defeat."
Smith, a freshman, scored a season-high 21 points, DeMarcus Nelson
had 18 points and Singler finished with 17 for the Blue Devils, who had all five starters foul out in the closing moments in losing for the fourth time in five visits to Winston-Salem.
"The foul trouble caught up with us, and they continued to play hard and well," Krzyzewski said. "The team that fought harder and had more energy won. ... I don't think it meant that we just laid down and died. Our kids fought. At this time of the year, you have to match or be better than the other team."
In a way, the Demon Deacons beat the Blue Devils at their own game, spreading things out on the offensive end of the court and turning up the pressure on defense. Singler, who entered having made 15-of-28 attempts from 3-point range in his previous four games, was just 2-of-6 from beyond the arc.
"We can go [with] four guards, just like those guys have, and we have bigs ... that can move out there," point guard Ishmael Smith
said. "So what we tried to do is switch on ball screens and contest their shots."Jamie Skeen
added 10 points for Wake Forest, which came out determined to honor Prosser's memory and give Gaudio a signature win, rocking the Joel Coliseum like it hadn't been in years.
With students spelling out "WIN 4 SKIP" in body paint -- in honor of Prosser, who died July 26 of an apparent heart attack -- and the players loudly chanting "Dino" in the hallway beforehand, Wake Forest came out firing and opened the game with an 18-9 run.
Teague scored 11 points during the burst, capping it with his third 3-pointer 5 1/2 minutes into the game. The Demon Deacons led for most of the first half, with Skeen's stickback at the buzzer giving them a 47-42 lead.
"I thought us getting out to a good start was big," Gaudio said. "Jeff Teague, who is a really courageous young guy, he got us off to a terrific start. He let us know that we can play with these guys."