Wake Forest Runs Past NC State 85-78

Feb. 26, 2009

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - No. 13/14-ranked Wake Forest downed in-state rival North Carolina State, 85-78, on Thursday night at the Lawrence Joel Coliseum. Sophomore forward James Johnson had career highs of 28 points and 18 rebounds to lead the Demon Deacons in the victory, which evened the season series with the Wolfpack.

With 1:05 remaining, junior guard Ishmael Smith found Johnson for an alley-oop dunk that put the Deacons ahead, 78-71, and helped clinch the Wake Forest (21-5, 8-5 ACC) victory.

Also helping to secure the win, the Deacons shot 7-of-8 from the line in the last minute of play.

NC State (15-11, 5-8 ACC) brought the score to within two points four different times in the second half. The latest two-point margin, 54-52, came with 12:15 left. Wake Forest then responded by going on a 13-6 run. Johnson capped the run with a layup to put the Deacons up nine, 67-58.

Smith finished with a season-high 18 points, shooting 6-of-8 from the field and a perfect 4-of-4 from the line.

Wake Forest recorded a 20-2 run in the first half to put the Deacons up 39-24.

The score at the break was 43-35. Johnson picked up his ninth double-double of the season with 4:33 remaining in the half.

Junior center Chas McFarland totaled 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting and added eight rebounds.

Sophomore guard Jeff Teague finished with 12 points, marking his 30th consecutive game in double-figures.

With the win, Wake Forest is tied for third in the ACC with No. 12 Clemson and No. 23 Florida State. The Deacons now hold a home record of 13-1 this season.

NC State had five players in double-figures. The top scorer for the Wolfpack was sophomore forward Tracy Smith with 18.

The all-time series between Wake Forest and NC State - which dates back to the 1910-11 season - now stands at 131-98, in favor of the Wolfpack.

Wake Forest will play at Virginia on Saturday at 2 p.m. The game will be televised by Raycom.

- WakeForestSports.com -



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