Deacons Fall Just Short At Duke 81-70

Feb. 17, 2013

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By Gary Petit, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeWBB)

DURHAM, N.C. - Wake Forest junior Chelsea Douglas scored a career-high 24 points and the Demon Deacons pushed No. 5/4 Duke into the final minutes but came up just short 81-70 Sunday afternoon.

The loss drops the Deacs to 11-15 on the season and 4-10 in the ACC. Duke remains perfect in the ACC at 14-0 and 24-1 on the year.

Duke's Tricia Liston knocked down her fifth three-pointer of the game with 2:15 to play to give Duke a 72-67 lead. The Deacon then missed a couple of shots late and the Blue Devils pushed to the final margin from the free throw line.

Douglas had a tremendous game for the Deacs, tying her career-high with five three-pointers. She was 5-of-7 from beyond the arc on the day and also dished-out a pair of assists. Douglas topped her previous career-high of 23 points which she set against Coppin State in the season-opener.

Seniors Sandra Garcia and Lakevia Boykin also enjoyed solid games. Garcia notched her first double-double of the season with 10 points and 10 rebounds. She also finished with a team-high three steals and played great defense on the Duke's Elizabeth Williams. Boykin got off to a slow start but hit three three-pointers in the second half and finished with 17 points.

Fellow senior Asia Williams finished with a career-high 10 assists and five points while battling foul trouble and Dearica Hamby totaled 10 points and five rebounds.

For Duke, Liston took over in the second half and finished with a career-high 29 points. The Blue Devils were hampered a bit offensively after point guard Chelsea Grey went down with a knee injury in the first half but Liston and Williams picked up the slack. Williams finished with 11 points and a pair of blocks while Haley Peters notched a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds.

The Deacons finished the game 28-of-61 (45.9 percent) from the floor which included shooting over 55 percent in the second half. Duke shot just 37 percent in the second half and finished the game at 40.3 percent.

The big difference in the game came on the glass. Duke won the battle on the boards 46-31 and had 19 second chance points compared to 11 for the Deacs.

The Deacons could not have gotten off to a better start. Garcia scored six of Wake's first eight points and grabbed four rebounds in the first three minutes to lead Wake to an 8-0 lead. Even after Duke answered, Douglas responded with a pair of three-pointers to give the Deacs an 18-9 edge at the 13:12 mark of the opening half.

Duke then picked-up the pressure on the defensive end scored the next 12 points to take the lead 21-18 with just over 10 minutes to play in the half. Lay-ins by Hamby and Garcia evened the score at 22-22 but the Blue Devils would end the half on a 15-6 run to take a 37-28 lead at the break.

Douglas had 10 points in the first half while Garcia had eight points and six rebounds.

Duke come out of the locker room and took its largest lead of the game at 43-30 on a pair of Liston three-pointers. But the Deacons were not fazed and scored the next six points to cut the lead back to seven. The Devils again pushed the lead to 49-36 with 15:28 to play but a pair of free throws from Hamby and back-to-back three-pointers from Douglas knifed the lead to five at 49-44.

Douglas' third three-pointer of the half extended the Deacon run to 16-3 and even the score at 52-52 with just over 11 minutes to play. Over the next five minutes, Duke slowly pushed the lead back out to seven but seven-straight points by Boykin helped the Deacons even the score once again at 64-64 with 4:39 to play.

After trading three-pointers, Duke's Elizabeth Williams made a pair of free throws and Liston's three-pointer gave Duke a 72-67 lead with 2:15 left. After a Deacon turnover, Liston hit a pair of free throws to make it a seven-point game with 1:48 to play.

Boykin hit her third three-pointer of the half to cut the deficit to 74-70 but seven of its final eight free throws in the final 1:04 to provide the final margin of 81-70.

Wake Forest will return home this Thursday to host Georgia Tech. The game is set to tip off at 6:30 p.m. The two teams battled into overtime in the first meeting of the season with Tech coming out on top 89-82 in Atlanta.



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