After a much needed win over Boston College on Tuesday night, the Deacs return home to take on Georgia Tech this Saturday. Georgia Tech is a team that has played really well at home this season, picking up wins over UNC, FSU, and Notre Dame. On the road, they have not been as good; the Yellow Jackets have just 1 conference road win this season over NC State. With Wake Forest needing to win Saturday to keep any hopes of making the NCAA Tournament alive, they will need to disrupt these Yellow Jackets from having a big day:
Josh Okogie | Freshman Guard | #5
Okogie is having a fantastic freshman season for the Jackets. He is averaging 15.2 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.2 steals per game. His conference game numbers are even better, averaging 17.3 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. He has put up some impressive scoring numbers in big games this season, scoring 35 in a win over 6th ranked FSU and 26 in a win over #9 UNC. Okogie is not a huge threat from beyond the arc; he shoots just 34% from downtown and only 17% of his shots are 3-pointers. He is most effective as a scorer in the midrange game and driving to the basket. In conference play, he gets to the free throw line a whopping 7.5 times per game and shoots 49% from inside the arc.
One of the things Georgia Tech likes to do on offense is clear out the paint to allow their guards to have cutting lanes. Okogie is great at using the backdoor cut to get easy points in the paint, so the Deacs will need to be vigilant on not overplaying and allowing him to get free dunks.
Ben Lammers | Junior Center | #44
Lammers is having a great year, and has a great chance at being the ACC’s most improved player this season. He has made significant improvements in pretty much every area of his game. He is averaging 15.1 points (3.1 last season), 9.6 rebounds (4.0 last season), 3.2 blocks (1.3 last season), and 2 assists (0.5 last season) per game this season. That’s a pretty big jump in production, and he has definitely benefited from an increase in playing time as well. Lammers is a really good rim protector, and will probably be on the All-ACC defensive team since he is 3rd in the nation in blocked shots and 2nd in the ACC in rebounds.
On the offensive side of the court, Lammers is a very skilled big that has a really nice jump shot for guy of his size. He can score with his back to the basket or facing up, and he is shooting almost 54% from the field this season.
He is also a decent driver, and can drive the ball to the basket from the high post and finish the play with a highlight dunk.
The offensive skill set of John Collins against the defensive abilities of Ben Lammers should definitely be a fun matchup to watch, and it will likely be the key to the Deacs picking up a win in front of the home crowd.