No. 8 Wake Forest Falls to No. 9 Duke
Feb. 22, 2009
Jon Scheyer added a career-high 30 points in his second straight start at point guard for the Blue Devils (22-5, 8-4 Atlantic Coast Conference). They twice led by 22 points in the first half and let the Demon Deacons creep within two points before finally putting them away with a late 16-6 run keyed by Henderson.
He led Duke to a critical victory that moved it into a three-way tie for second in the league standings behind North Carolina. Now, the Blue Devils finish the season with three of its final four games away from cozy Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Jeff Teague scored 28 points and James Johnson added 26 for the Demon Deacons (20-5, 7-5). They shot 61 percent but allowed Duke to hit 54 percent of its attempts - the worst performance of the season by the ACC's stingiest defense.
"If somebody would have said we were going to score 91 points and we'd lose, I think I would have called him a liar," Wake Forest coach Dino Gaudio said.
Yet his team managed to twice close within two points down the stretch, the last coming when freshman Al-Farouq Aminu's alley-oop dunk from Johnson made it 80-78 with 7 1/2 minutes remaining.
"You lose the lead in a game like this, and you might lose the game," Krzyzewski said.
Scheyer and Henderson wouldn't let that happen.
Scheyer knocked down three free throws roughly 30 seconds later to start the decisive run in which Duke hit 6-of-7 attempts from the foul line. Henderson and Scheyer then capped the run by hitting 3-pointers about a minute apart, with Scheyer pushing it to 96-84 with 2:12 left.
Wake Forest didn't get closer than seven points the rest of the way.
"We got so close, man, but their good players made big plays for them at the end," Teague said. "That's what you expect from big-time players like him. We really needed some stops down the stretch, but we couldn't get any."
Ishmael Smith scored 12 points and L.D. Williams added 10 for Wake Forest, which has lost four straight road games. Its last victory away from Joel Coliseum, a 78-68 win at Clemson on Jan. 17, propelled the Demon Deacons to the second No. 1 ranking in school history.
They were dethroned shortly after that, and a week later they turned the tables on the Blue Devils, knocking them from the top spot with a 70-68 victory in which Henderson's final-seconds turnover gave Johnson an opportunity to hit the game-winning shot with 0.8 seconds remaining.
Duke appeared to have taken control early by outscoring Wake Forest 28-4 during a 9-minute stretch midway through the first half in which the Blue Devils made their guests look like a young, mistake-prone team that had never before played at Cameron. Wake Forest had 16 of its 20 turnovers in the first half.
Then again, Teague was among three Demon Deacons starters who were, in fact, playing here for the first time. Duke twice led by 22 after reeling off 14 straight points during that run.
"Early, it wasn't our offense," Gaudio said. "It was our turnovers."
But after falling behind 41-19, Wake Forest made it a game again by scoring on eight consecutive possessions to start a run in which it outscored the Blue Devils 25-10 over a 7-minute stretch that bridged halftime. Teague - who went without a field goal for the opening 14 minutes - started that run with a jumper and had 16 points during that burst.
"We just could not stop them," Krzyzewski said. "But they couldn't stop us, either."