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Three Up, Three Down: Georgia Tech

Boy howdy, what a fantastic Valentine’s Day gift. Better than any chocolates, that’s for darn sure. This was probably our best game all season, and it feels so, so good given the mood around the program lately.

NCAA Basketball: Georgia Tech at Wake Forest Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The Ups

Bryant Crawford; Still Pretty Good. I don’t know if he went on that spirit walk I mentioned or something, but the junior point guard had his best game in a long, long time. He killed it with 16 points on 5-9 shooting, 2-4 from deep, 4-4 from the line and an incredible 9 assists to 0 turnovers. That’s pretty nuts.

Doral Moore Is Unstoppable. The big man put up an almost DeAndre Jordan-esque stat line, with 17 points on 8-11 shooting, 1-4 from the line, and 12 boards in 28 minutes. Georgia Tech just had no answer for him whatsoever all night.

Ball Movement? Yes Please. Wake had 17 assists on 29 baskets. which is really good. Even more insane, however, is that the Deacs had five turnovers total, two of which came in garbage time with the game already over, one turnover for Melo Eggleston and one for Brandon Childress. To go 9-17 as a squad from deep is fantastic, and requires smart, effective ball movement. The bottom line is when we don’t turn the ball over we’re quite difficult to beat.

The Downs

Stop The Ball, Please. So I know Josh Okogie is one of the best in the league, but the guy got to the rim at absolute will. He actually didn’t shoot very well from the field, going 5-13, 0-4 from deep, but he made an absolute living from the line, going 10-11 from the stripe. If the Deacs had been more effective at stopping the ball, this thing probably would have been even more of a laugher.

It Can Never Just Be Simple, Huh? Granted, this happened in the first half, but the Deacs took a 9 point lead early, then the lead quickly evaporated thanks to ugly shots, no ball-stopping as mentioned, and the few turnovers the Deacs did have. Basketball will always be a game of runs, and this feels like a bit of a nitpick given how much we ran away with it in the end, but come on fellas.

Doral “DeAndre Jordan” Moore, Better And For Worse. Doral going 1-4 from the line is, well, not good, but even worse, he’s 10-30 from the stripe in conference play. Listen, Doral is our MVP, and he was amazing this game, but to call the free throw shooting anything other than brutal would be disingenuous.

The Bottom Line

I’m not Ken Pomeroy, but I’d venture to say performances like these are the reason why we’re statistically a good bit better than our record indicates. The problem is that I’d say this is the first time we’ve strung together almost 40 minutes of competent conference basketball, and the score reflects that. If Wake Forest can internalize this performance and ride the momentum, I like our chances to pull a minor upset against NC State on Saturday and get back to back conference wins. Let’s get it.

On to the next. Go Deacs.