WINSTON-SALEM--There's simply no place like home for the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, who ran their winning streak at Joel Coliseum to 12 after Codi Miller-McIntyre's layup with 4 seconds left dispatched the N.C. State Wolfpack, 70-69. After a rough week on the road, where the Deacs were blown out by Virginia and handled by Pittsburgh, the Deacs found some relief in the comforts of home- and the surprising double-double from Arnaud William Adala Moto.
"The goal was to give me the ball and go full speed to the basket," Miller-McIntyre said of the game-winning play. "If I did not have it, I had Coron (Williams) and Travis (McKie), but I saw the opportunity and I took it."
Moto (15 points, 11 rebounds) was one of 4 Deacs in double figures, led by Miller-McIntyre's 20 and followed by Devin Thomas (16 points, 6 rebounds) and Tyler Cavanaugh (10 points). Wake Forest (12-5, 2-2 ACC) shot 54.3 percent from the field and 72 percent from the line in a game rife with whistles. Moto made 14 trips to the line and made the most of his opportunity, hiting 11.
"Arnaud just really played well in all areas in the game," Wake Forest head coach Jeff Bzdelik said. "He's never wavered in his attitude. He's continued to work very hard."
Wake Forest raced out to a 20-11 lead, courtesy of 3 three-pointers from Cavanaugh, but State stormed back with a 14-4 run to take the lead with 8:25 remaining in the first half. State was able to stretch the lead thanks to some hot shooting and Wake Forest's carelessness with the ball, and took an 8-point lead into halftime.
The second half devolved quickly into a veritable foul-fest, and the Deacs chipped away at the deficit until a Thomas layup gave the Deacs a 1-point lead with just over 9 minutes to play. Wake Forest took advantage of the Wolfpack foul trouble, eventually fouling out ACC-leading scorer T.J. Warren with just under 3 minutes to play. With no Warren available, the Pack's offensive options thinned greatly but Cat Barber's running floater with 10 seconds to play put State up 1.
Miller-McIntyre then streaked up the court after the ensuing inbound for what turned out to be the game-winning layup. He was fouled on the play but missed the shot, leaving the Pack with one last chance to win the game. Barber's heave at the buzzer was no good, however, and the Deacs were once again .500 in the ACC.
"We practiced that," Bzdelik said. We practice our special situations often. Everyone knew what to do; we just needed to do it, and we did it. It was a good day."
Bits and Pieces:
- There were 52 total fouls called in the game (26 apiece). Wake Forest shot 39 free throws.
- Wake Forest was out-rebounded in he first half, 20-7, and had ZERO offensive rebounds.
- State's Jordan Vandenberg game out blazing, scoring 8 quick points but disappeared as foul troubles mounted.
- Wake's 71.8 percent FT was the third-best output of the season, behind 75 percent against Ricmond and 72.2 at Virginia.