Wake Forest 96 - Miami 79
That was ... not good.
Now, we don’t want to sing too many praises following the terribly depressing defensive debacle that was this basketball game. But, if you’re (somehow) not yet sold on the legend that is Coach Jim Larranaga, it’s time to get with the program. After guiding his Miami squad to a 26-point thrashing of the Pittsburgh Panthers, Larranaga notched his 600th career victory, landing at 47th all-time in NCAA victories.
Coach L was looking to keep the storm rolling through North Carolina as the Hurricanes met up with Wake Forest just three days before making the trek to Cameron Indoor Stadium for a showdown with Duke.
(Hint: The storm has calmed)
A betting man would have figured The U’s defense was going to show up and shine bright Wednesday night. Yes, that defense, the one that’s ranked 4th nationally in points allowed (59.3) and 10th in field-goal percentage against (38.1%). That’s the one.
Unfortunately, on this night that betting man would have lost lots of money. Tonight’s recipe for demise was a deadly combination of lazy rotations, ball-watching galore, and swish after swish after swish for the Deacons.
So, the Miami defense didn’t make an appearance, this much was obvious from the get-go, as Wake jumped out to an early 23-8 lead and finished by slapping a 96 on their home court. But what about Miami’s offense?
Days before tip-off, that same betting man was thinking: “If the dynamic freshman-senior tandem of Bruce Brown and Davon Reed can maintain their excellent strokes from beyond the arc while the crafty Ja’Quan Newton slices and dices, the Hurricanes should be entirely too much to handle.”
Swing and a miss once again.
Davon did his thing, finishing with 24 on 8-for-17 shooting. However, Newton and Brown were mostly invisible throughout the night.. Regardless of a highlight play here and there, the three headed monster was subdued and beheaded by the one North Carolina-based ACC team Miami simply cannot lose to.
— 96 points for Wake. NINETY-SIX. Twenty-three (23!?!) more points than Miami had allowed to an opponent all season long.
— Larranaga, Newton and Reed have high hopes of showing rooks like Brown and Dewan Huell what it’s like to go dancing in March — and they were off to a solid start. Sadly, they’ll be stuck in the
purgatory living hell that is the NIT if they create a habit out of squandering opportunities against bottom-barrel to middle-tier ACC teams like the Deacs. And remember, folks, if you’re stuck in the NIT come season’s end, you’re going to have a very bad time.
— Just chill out, though, because we’ve got Coach L on our side.