The Wake Forest Demon Deacons found themselves tied with the #15 Miami Hurricanes at 48 with 10:19 remaining in the contest, but in a game of runs, Miami went on a 17-3 run over the next 6 minutes, before ultimately winning by a final score of 77-63. Wake played well in stretches, but turning the ball over and failing to consistently grab defensive rebounds proved to be too costly. Wake Forest dropped to 10-9 (1-6 ACC), while Miami improved to 15-3 (4-2 ACC).
The first half of this contest truly was a game of runs. After Dinos Mitoglou started the game with a 3, the Miami Hurricanes quickly capitalized on two early Bryant Crawford turnovers and got out to an 8-3 lead. Wake battled back to take a 12-10 lead after Mitchell Wilbekin made a jump shot.
After some back-and-forth, Miami went up 31-20 and caused Danny Manning to take a timeout for Wake Forest. That portion of basketball featured some sloppy play for the Deacs, but was also some truly awful officiating.
Wake responded to the timeout well, and ended the half on a 13-4 run and found themselves down just 2 points at halftime. John Collins gave us some really good minutes during this sequence, as did Rondale Watson.
Both teams were fairly sloppy outside of the gate in the second half and were struggling to score, but I still liked the looks that Wake was getting. In the first 10 minutes of the half they got their points from three, the foul line, and around the basket. Those are high effective field goal percentage shots. As a result, the Deacs were tied at 48 with the #15 Miami Hurricanes. Wake Forest then hit a proverbial wall.
Wake was missing jump shots, turning the ball over, missing free throws, giving Miami free throws, and allowing penetration. This is where Miami went on the aforementioned 17-3 run and held a 65-51 lead with just 4 minutes remaining. Wake played even with them for the remainder of the game, but the result was academic.
Bryant Crawford has made some outstanding plays for Wake Forest this season, but the freshman had some costly and careless turnovers in this one. He tried to get too flashy with his behind the back pass to John Collins (though JC should probably anticipate that) and then his arcing sky lob to Doral Moore that went out of bounds. He also sometimes drives too early in the shot clock and those wild misses are quasi turnovers.
Codi Miller-McIntyre has done a lot of positive things during his Wake Forest career, but he looks like a shell of himself out there. I don't know how much is physical versus mental, but his stat line was awful today. He was 0-4 from the field, had 0 points, and 4 fouls, but he did have just 1 turnover. He's not a threat to shoot from the outside. I hope he can find his game, but it's been difficult to watch him recently.
Doral Moore played just 5 minutes today, but I loved what I saw. He was 2-2 from the field and finished with 4 points. He also hauled down 3 rebounds and had 2 blocks. He has great potential, and I'd like to see Manning get him more minutes as the season progresses. I also liked what I saw from John Collins in his trip back home. He was efficient around the basket, made his free throws, and came away with 10 points. Those two are going to be a very formidable duo moving forward. Both are learning a lot from Manning as well as senior forward Devin Thomas, who finished with 12 points and 9 rebounds.
Ultimately, it's very difficult to beat teams when you have 6 more turnovers and get outrebounded by 10. Wake Forest actually shot the ball better than the Hurricanes, but Miami had more field goal attempts as a result of crashing the offensive glass and limiting turnovers. The Miami backcourt was very strong and Ja'Quan Newton, Sheldon McClellan, and Angel Rodriguez combined for 46 points.
Miami will host Duke on Monday, while Wake Forest will host Virginia on Tuesday.