#8 Duke beats #9 Wake Forest

In a battle of two of the top teams in the ACC (and in the nation), the Duke Blue Devils jumped out quickly on the Demon Deacons, building a 22-point lead late in the first half before Wake slowly chipped away at the lead. They got within two points with under eight minutes to play in the second half, but Duke managed its lead and ultimately triumphed, 101-91.

Before the game, Wake Forest head coach Dino Gaudio talked up his team’s league-leading field goal percentage allowed, and then Duke went out and set the nets on fire. Duke shot 54% from the field, and Wake was even better, shooting 61% in the loss. It’s not often that a team shoots over 60% and still loses the game.

Gerald Henderson scored a career-high 35 points and was phenomenal the entire night. He was 10 of 11 from two-point range and hit 12 of his 14 free throws. Jon Scheyer chipped in with 30 points, and seems to be adjusting to playing more point guard.

Coach K moved Scheyer to point and decided to start freshman guard Elliot Williams and he had 11 points and four steals on the night. Williams has seen inconsistent minutes all season, and registered two DNP’s against North Carolina and Boston College. It looks like he’ll see more minutes down the stretch. He gives the Blue Devils more athleticism at the guard position and is a solid defender and slasher.

Jeff Teague (28 points) and James Johnson (26 points, 11 rebounds) led Wake Forest’s comeback. The Demon Deacons had trouble executing down the stretch because of poor guard play out of Ishmael Smith. He played well for much of the game but had a couple of key turnovers (five on the game) down the stretch that ended Wake’s comeback. It was a big win for the Blue Devils as it was their first win over the top teams in the ACC – North Carolina, Clemson and Wake. More importantly, it keeps them in the hunt for a conference championship and a #1 seed in the NCAA tournament.

In other action, #14 Villanova beat #25 Syracuse, 89-86. The Wildcats are one of the hottest teams in the country right now and are getting great play out of the guard position (Scottie Reynolds, Reggie Redding, Corey Fisher). They are going to be a force to be reckoned with come tournament time.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

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