GET IT TO THE GREEK: Mitoglou's Triple Sparks Deacs Past Pitt
March 1, 2015
By Alex Botoman - Wake Forest Athletic Communications, Emeritus
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Freshman Konstantinos Mitoglou drained a 3-pointer with less than three minutes left to put Wake Forest in front for good, capping off a nine-point second-half comeback for a 69-66 win over Pittsburgh on Senior Night Sunday at the LJVM Coliseum.
Sunday's game was also billed as "Greek Night" with a large group from the Winston-Salem Greek community in attendance, so it was only fitting that the Greece-native Mitoglou played Hercules for the Demon Deacons during their second half rally. He was helped in large part by Codi Miller-McIntyre who scored 12 of his 13 points in the final 12 minutes, including a crucial steal and jumper to tie the score just seconds before Mitoglou's go-ahead triple.
It was the final game in Winston-Salem for seniors Darius Leonard, Daniel Green and Doug Niedrich. All three saw action in the game, with Green and Niedrich coming onto the floor to close things out on Pitt's final possession. Leonard led the trio with seven points and five rebounds.
The 2014-15 home finale was also a night to remember for junior Devin Thomas who scored his 1,000th career point early in the first half to become the 51st player in school history to reach that milestone. Thomas and Codi Miller-McIntyre are the first Wake Forest teammates to score 1,000 points by their junior season since Justin Gray and Eric Williams (2003-06).
Mitchell Wilbekin led the Demon Deacons with 14 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting, including 4-of-4 from 3-point range. In addition to his 13 points, Miller-McIntyre led the Deacs with seven rebounds and five assists. Cornelius Hudson also scored in double figures with 11 points and pulled down four boards.
Pittsburgh's Michael Young led all players with 22 points, while Jamel Artis finished a rebound shy of a double-double with 19 points and nine boards.
Only minutes after his Senior Night ceremony, Darius Leonard opened the game for the Demon Deacons by draining a 3-pointer on the first possession, sparking a stretch that saw Wake Forest make its first five shots from the field to take an early 13-5 lead. After Pittsburgh regrouped to cut the lead to a point, the Deacons again caught fire for a 10-2 to build their biggest margin of the first half at 24-15.
Wake Forest continued to connect from distance throughout the first half - seven times in total - to take a 37-35 lead into the break.
Pitt was the hot team to start the second half, starting the period on a 7-2 run to take its first lead of the game at 44-39 and the Panthers pushed their advantage to as many as nine points midway through the half before the Deacs started to claw their way back into it.
Codi Miller-McIntyre brought the building to life with three minutes left, intercepting a Shelton Jeter outlet pass and knocking down a 13-foot fadeaway to tie the score at 61-61. After a stop on the other end, Miller-McIntyre drove the lane before turning and dishing to a wide-open Konstantinos Mitoglou at the top of the key, and the Greek freshman drained the triple to give the Deacons their first lead since halftime.
Wake Forest will kick off the final week of the regular season against archrival Duke on Wednesday at 8 p.m. at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham. The game will be televised on the ACC Network and can also be heard on the Wake Forest IMG Sports Network.
Thomas Scores 1,000th Point
Wilbekin Has Perfect Night on Offense
By Emma Lingan, Wake Forest Athletic Communications
Freshman guard Mitchell Wilbekin shot a perfect 100% in Wake Forest's 69-66 win over Pitt Sunday night. He led Wake Forest with 14 points and finished with five field goals on the night, including four 3-pointers, tying season-highs in both categories. Wilbekin shot a perfect 4-for-4 in the first half, with all of his shots coming from behind the arc. He made a jumper in the second half to finish five field goals and 14 points to lead the Demon Deacons.
"It's definitely not just me," Wilbekin said. "My teammates do a great job of finding me. On the offenses we run, different guys are going to be open. It's just a matter of knocking them down."
Wilbekin did not turn the ball over once in 28 minutes of play. He has just 12 turnovers in 16 ACC games, despite averaging over 30 minutes per contest.
"My teammates make it easy on me," Wilbekin said. "I just try not to force anything, to play smart, and just let the game come to me."
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