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WFU Deacons plays at No. 14 NC State Wolfpack on Saturday

Posted Thursday, January 19, 2006

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Wake Forest hopes to keep momentum alive after win over Georgia Tech

Game No. 18 / RBC Center / Raleigh, NC
Wake Forest (12-5/1-3) at #14/14 NC State (14-3/3-2)

Tip-Off: 4:05 p.m.
TV: Raycom/Jefferson-Pilot. Steve Martin (play-by-play) and Dan Bonner (color) call the action. Lance Stewart is the producer.
Radio: Wake Forest ISP Sports Network. Stan Cotten (play-by-play) and Mark Freidinger (color analysis) call the action.
Live Stats: WakeForestSports.com.
Records: Wake Forest is 12-5 overall and 1-3 in the ACC after an 86-71 win over visiting Georgia Tech Wednesday night. NC State is 14-3 and 3-2 following an 81-68 loss at No. 1 Duke Wednesday night.
Rankings: Wake Forest is receiving votes for both national polls. NC State is ranked 14th in both the Associated Press poll and the ESPN/USA Today poll.
Coaches: Wake Forest coach Skip Prosser (U.S. Merchant Marine Academy `72) is 106-40 (.726) in his fifth season with the Demon Deacons, 271-118 (.697) in his 13th season overall.
NC State coach Herb Sendek (Carnegie Mellon `85) is 183-125 in 10 seasons with the Wolfpack, 246-151 in 13 seasons overall.
Series: NC State leads the all-time series, 126-94.
On Deck: Wake Forest hosts Florida State Tuesday night. NC State hosts Seton Hall Wednesday night.
Officials: Announced on game day.

Wake Forest Seeks Valuable ACC Road Win At 14th-Ranked NC State On Saturday
Wake Forest, which got the monkey off its back by winning its first ACC game Wednesday night, attempts to keep its momentum alive when it travels to 14th-ranked NC State on Saturday (4:05 p.m./JP Sports TV).
The Demon Deacons, 12-5 overall and 1-3 in the ACC, led Georgia Tech by as many as 27 points Wednesday night before holding on for an 86-71 victory over the visiting Yellow Jackets. With the win, the Deacons avoided their worst ACC start since 1989-90.
Senior Justin Gray, who has averaged 30 points per game over the last three games, paces the Demon Deacons. The second-leading scorer in the ACC (19.9 ppg), Gray has 13 three-point field goals over the last two games. Senior Eric Williams (16.2 ppg) has averaged 17.7 points and 13.0 rebounds over his last three games.
NC State, 14-3 and 3-2, is coming off an 81-68 loss at No. 1 Duke Wednesday night. The Wolfpack, who are 11-0 at home, are one of the league's most balanced teams with seven players averaging at least 8.0 points per game.
NC State leads the all-time series, 126-94. Wake Forest swept the regular season series last season, but State beat the Deacons in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament.

Saturday's Storylines
- The last four Wake Forest-NC State meetings in Raleigh have been decided by a total of 14 points, including a 55-53 Wake Forest victory last season.
- Saturday's game is a homecoming of sorts for two Raleigh-area Deacons -- Eric Williams (Wake Forest, NC) and Cameron Stanley (Raleigh).
- Wake Forest is looking for a road win against a nationally-ranked team for the first time since winning at No. 20 Cincinnati on Jan. 22, 2005.
- The Deacons lead the ACC and rank fifth nationally in rebound margin (+9.1).

More From Wednesday's Win vs. Tech
For 30 minutes Wednesday, Wake Forest played its best basketball of the season, building a 27-point lead over Georgia Tech. More on Wednesday's 86-71 victory against the Yellow Jackets:
- Wake Forest used its fifth different starting lineup of the season, inserting senior Chris Ellis and freshman Harvey Hale.
- The Deacons recorded 14 steals -- their most pilfers since last season (18 on Feb. 23, 2005 vs. Longwood).
- Wake Forest had more assists (18) than turnovers (13) for the first time since Dec. 30.
- Senior Eric Williams recorded his second double-double over the last three games.
- Freshman Harvey Hale scored a career-high 14 points, including six crucial points late in the game.

Senior Duo Of Gray And Williams On Remarkable Individual Rolls
Lost in Wake Forest's last three games in which the Demon Deacons went 1-2 have been the efforts of Wake Forest's two John Wooden Award candidates -- seniors Justin Gray and Eric Williams:
- Over the last three games, Gray has averaged 30.0 points, 6.0 three-point field goals and 5.0 assists per game while shooting 57.7 percent from three-point range and 89.3 percent from the free throw line.
- Williams, during that same stretch, has averaged 17.7 points, 13.0 rebounds, 1.7 steals and 1.3 blocked shots per game while shooting better than 56 percent.
- Gray has scored at least 25 points in his last three games, including a career-high 38 points at Maryland last Sunday.
- Gray's 38-point effort tied for the most points by a Deacon player in the Skip Prosser era. Craig Dawson scored 38 points in a double-overtime loss to Clemson on Feb. 13, 2002. He sank a season-best seven three-point field goals on 11 attempts. His 21 first-half points were the most by a Deacon player in any half this season.
- Williams has two double-doubles over the last three games, including a 22-point, career-high 20 rebound performance at Clemson Jan. 11.
- His 20 rebounds against the Tigers were the most by a Deacon player since Tim Duncan in 1997.


Deacons Getting Share Of Close Ones
If playing close games is good experience for March, Wake Forest should be well-prepared for the postseason.
The Demon Deacons have played eight games decided by five points or less, earning a 4-4 record. No other team in the ACC has played in more than four such games.
The Deacons have played in an ACC-high three overtime games.

Wake's Close Calls In 2005-06
Result Opponent Site Date
L, 86-90 Maryland A Jan. 15, 2006
L, 73-74 (ot) Clemson A Jan. 11, 2006
W, 58-54 East Carolina H Jan. 3, 2006
L, 81-84 DePaul H Dec. 13, 2005
W, 91-88 Wisconsin H Nov. 29, 2005
W, 78-73 (2ot) Texas Tech ny Nov. 18, 2005
L, 72-77 Florida ny Nov. 17, 2005
W, 83-78 (ot) George Mason H Nov. 11, 2005

Deacons Playing Extra Minutes
There have been four overtime games this season involving ACC teams and Wake Forest has been a part of three of them.
The Deacons beat George Mason in overtime at home, topped Texas Tech in double-overtime in New York, and lost to Clemson in overtime Jan. 11.
More on Wake Forest and overtime games:
- This year's Wake Forest team has already done something last year's team did not do -- win an overtime game. Last year the Deacons went 0-3 in overtime games, including a double-overtime loss to West Virginia in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
- The Deacs have a long way to go to tie the school and ACC record of seven overtimes in one season, set in 1984.
- Wake Forest is 46-48 all-time in overtime games, including a 5-5 mark under coach Skip Prosser.
- The Deacons have lost three straight road OT games.

Prosser: 106 Wake Wins & Counting
In just five seasons at Wake Forest, Skip Prosser's teams have accumulated 106 victories, meaning his Deacons have averaged 21.3 wins per season during his tenure.
Prosser's record at Wake Forest stands at 106-40 (.726). His career record is 271-118 (.697) in 13 seasons overall.
In each of Prosser's four previous seasons with the Deacons, Wake Forest has won at least 20 games, produced a winning record in the ACC and earned an NCAA Tournament berth.
Prosser will coach his 147th Wake Forest game Saturday. What his teams have accomplished statistically in his tenure is remarkable:
- Over the last four seasons combined (including this season), Wake Forest has won 36 ACC games. Only Duke, with 40 wins, has won more league games during that time.
- Wake Forest is 66-8 at home with just two losses coming to a non-conference opponent.
- Prosser's teams are 13-7 in games decided by three points or less.
- His teams are 100-6 when leading with 5:00 remaining.
- Wake Forest has out-rebounded its opponent in 110 of 146 games under Prosser.
- The Deacons have scored 100-plus points nine times under Prosser.
- Prosser is a combined 45-6 in games played in November and December.

Wake vs. State: The Series History
- NC State leads the all-time series, 126-94.
- The two teams have split the last eight meetings. Wake Forest swept the regular season series last season, but fell to the Wolfpack in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament. NC State swept the series in 2003-04.
- The Demon Deacons have won 10 of the last 14 meetings dating back to 1999-00.
- Wake Forest has won four of the last five meetings in Raleigh and the Deacons are 4-2 all-time in the RBC Center.
- The last four meetings in Raleigh have been decided by a total of 14 points, including a 55-53 Wake Forest victory last season.
n With 220 previous meetings, Wake Forest-NC State is the third-most frequently played series in the ACC.
- The first meeting between the two teams took place during the 1910-11 season.
- Wake Forest coach Skip Prosser is 6-4 all-time against NC State.
- Wolfpack coach Herb Sendek is 8-14 lifetime against the Demon Deacons.
- Wake Forest will play its sixth different North Carolina-based opponent this season.
- Wake Forest and NC State will play in the final game of the regular season (March 4) for the sixth straight year.

Deacon-Wolfpack Connections
- NC State's Ilian Evtimov attended high school in Winston-Salem at Reynolds before transferring to Bishop McGuiness.
- Deacon senior Trent Strickland and Wolfpack senior Cameron Bennerman both previously played at Hargrave Military Academy in Virginia.
- Bennerman and Wake freshman Kevin Swinton both hail from Greensboro.
- Wake Forest redshirt freshman Cameron Stanley hails from Raleigh, where he attended Millbrook High School. State's Braxton Albritton is also from Raleigh.
- Both head coaches previously worked as a head coach in Ohio -- Skip Prosser at Xavier and Herb Sendek at Miami.
- Wake Forest associate head coach Dino Gaudio, assistant coach Pat Kelsey, and NC State assistants Larry Harris and Mark Phelps are all Ohio natives.
- Both head coaches were born in Pittsburgh, PA.
- Former Deacon Josh Howard and recent Wolfpacker Josh Powell are teammates with the Dallas Mavericks.
- NC State media relations staffer Bill Newton previously worked in the Wake Forest media relations office.

Wake-NCSU Tid-Bits:
- At the RBC Center in Raleigh, Wake Forest is 6-2 all-time. That record includes two Deacon wins in the 2004 NCAA Tournament. Wake Forest beat VCU and Manhattan en route to advancing to the Sweet 16.
- Saturday's game will be the fourth consecutive in which the Deacons have faced an opponent coming off a loss.
- When NC State won the NCAA championship in 1983, it did so at The Pit in Albuquerque, NM. Wake Forest's Harvey Hale is from Albuquerque, although the Deacon freshman was not born until three years later.
- Saturday's game will be the 13th consecutive meeting in which at least one of the teams was nationally-ranked. It will be the first meeting since Jan. 18, 1990 since the Wolfpack carried a higher national ranking than Wake Forest into the game.
- NC State's Andrew Brackman did not see action in the Wolfpack's baseball series with Wake last spring.

On This Date In Deacon History
January 18th -- Wake Forest is 5-3 all-time on this date. The Deacons last played on January 21st in 2001 -- a 71-63 win over visiting Clemson.
Wake and NC State met on this date in 1983 -- an 80-69 Wolfpack victory in Raleigh.
On Jan. 21, 1996, just four Wake Forest players scored in a loss at 19th-ranked Clemson.

Comparing The Campuses
Wake Forest NC State
Winston-Salem, NC Location Raleigh, NC
1834 Founded 1887
4,037 Undergrad Enrollment 22,754
Private Private/Public Public
33 percent In-State Population 87 percent
Rusty LaRue Star On Court & Diamond Andrew Brackman
Frank Johnson Coached in the NBA Nate McMillan
John Mackovic Former KC Chiefs Coach Bill Cowher (DC)


Rebounding A Real Deacon Strength
Rebounding is always an emphasis of a Skip Prosser-coached team and this season is no different.
Wake Forest ranks first in the ACC and fifth nationally in rebound margin (+9.1). In 17 games this season, the Deacons have been out-rebounded just two times. More on the Deacons' rebounding:
- Wake's rebound margin ranks second in school history.
- The Deacons' rebound margin over the last six games is +10.0.
- Wake is producing a rebound margin of +9.0 or higher for just the third time in school history. In 2003, the Deacons led the nation in rebound margin (+9.7). In 1961, Wake used a +9.0 margin to help win its first ever ACC championship.
- Three of the top five rebounding teams in Wake Forest history have come under coach Skip Prosser.
- Eric Williams (8.7 rpg) ranks third in the ACC in rebounding and Trent Strickland (7.6) ranks seventh.
- On Dec. 17 against Princeton, Wake out-rebounded the Tigers 39-15, setting a school record for fewest rebounds by an opponent.
- Wisconsin entered its game against Wake with a +12.7 rebound margin. The Deacons out-rebounded the Badgers, 45-36.
- Against Texas Tech on Nov. 18, the Deacons pulled down 66 rebounds -- the second-most single-game boards in school history.

Defense Has Been Better This Season
The statistics show that Wake Forest is a much better defensive team this season.
The Deacons are holding opponents to 39.2 percent shooting, ranking third in the ACC and 22nd nationally for field goal percentage defense. Last year Wake Forest opponents shot nearly 44 percent.
Only DePaul, Duke and Maryland shot better than 48.1 percent against the Deacons. Wake has held eight opponents to less than 40 percent shooting, including three foes to less than 30 percent.
Wake Forest's field goal percentage defense is its lowest since the 1996-97 season and the seventh-lowest in school history.

Quick Player Updates
Michael Drum -- Jr., G, 6-6, Rural Hall, NC Has the best assist-to-turnover ratio on the team with 29 assists and just 15 miscues... started last Sunday at Maryland -- his first start since Nov. 18... has scoring potential -- he scored 15 points against Texas Tech -- but that's not what he is asked to do... overcame a bruised back and hip he suffered Jan. 11 at Clemson... has committed just one turnover in his last four games combined... looking for his first three-point field goal since Dec. 30... one of Wake's best free throw shooters (78.8 percent).
Shamaine Dukes -- Fr., G, 6-1, Cuthbert, GA Was taken out of the starting lineup Wednesday for the first time since Dec. 22, but his minutes remain consistent... Coming off two solid efforts against Maryland and Georgia Tech... made a three-point field goal and had just one turnover in 12 minutes against Tech... scored six points and matched a career-high with two three-point field goals at Maryland last Sunday... three of his five career three-point field goals have come over the last two games.
Chris Ellis -- Sr., F, 6-9, Marietta, GA Rewarded for his consistent play by starting for the first time this season (the third time in his career) Wednesday against Georgia Tech... shooting 47.3 percent (14-of-31) from three-point range... has made more three-pointers this season than he did in his previous three seasons combined... recorded his first career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds last Sunday at Maryland... scored in double figures for the first time since Dec. 13 and matched his career-high for rebounds... playing an average of 20 minutes per game... ranks second on the team with 20 blocked shots.
Justin Gray -- Sr., G, 6-2, Charlotte, NC One of the hottest players in the ACC, if not all of college basketball... has scored 90 points over his last three games including a career-high 38 points at Maryland last Sunday... he scored 21 first-half points against the Terps, then managed 17 in the second period despite facing a box-in-one defense... his 38 points tied for the most by a Deacon player in the Skip Prosser era... has 13 three-point field goals (on 18 attempts) over the last two games... his assists are up too, with 18 over the last three games... he is in elite Deacon company with more than 1,600 career points, 300 assists, 200 three-point field goals and 100 steals... going to the free throw line more frequently -- he is 25-of-28 from the stripe over the last three games... received votes for ACC Player of the Week even though the Deacons went 0-2 last week... his scoring average (19.9) is Wake's highest since Tim Duncan averaged 20.8 ppg in 1997... has played an average of 38 minutes over the last five games... he was named ACC Player of the Week Dec. 5, an honor he has earned three times in his career... his 37 points against Wisconsin Nov. 29 tied a Lawrence Joel Coliseum record and also tied an ACC/Big Ten Challenge record.
Harvey Hale -- Fr., G, 6-2, Albuquerque, NM Has played his best basketball since the ACC season began and the freshman is back in the starting lineup... coming off consecutive career-highs in scoring... averaging 10.0 points per game in league contests, ranking third on the team... coming off a career-high 14 points in the win over Georgia Tech Wednesday... he added four assists and two steals, but more importantly, scored six key points down the stretch... he scored a then-career-high 12 points at Maryland last Sunday and matched a career-best with two three-point field goals... playing an average of more than 24 minutes in ACC games... five of his 10 career three-pointers have come in the last four games.

Cameron Stanley -- r-Fr., F, 6-6, Raleigh, NC The redshirt freshman is seeing limited, but key minutes since the ACC season began... he played just six minutes Wednesday against Georgia Tech, but snared four rebounds and made his only field goal attempt... the southpaw from Raleigh did not play at Maryland last Sunday -- the first time he has not seen action since Nov. 18... he played 14 minutes against both Duke and Clemson... helped the Deacs erase a 12-point second-half deficit against Clemson... has eight rebounds over his last two games.
Trent Strickland -- Sr., G-F, 6-5, East Flat Rock, NC Broke out of a scoring slump Wednesday night against Georgia Tech with 14 points... added seven rebounds, two assists, two steals and one block for a solid overall performance... had gone three straight games scoring in single digits until the Tech game... did not start last Sunday at Maryland for the first time all season, but returned to the starting unit Wednesday... did not start because he was late for a team function... one of the ACC's most improved players, Strickland has doubled his scoring average from a year ago... he ranks 24th in the ACC at 12.5 points per game... shooting 52.5 percent from the field... has five double-figure rebound games this season including 16 against Texas Tech on Nov. 18... made his first six three-point field goal attempts of the season and is currently shooting 38.2 percent (13-of-34) from behind the arc... has already made 13 three-point field goals, compared to just 10 all of last season... playing an average of 32.4 minutes per game (compared to 16.9 last season)... named MVP of the 2k Classic Winston-Salem Regional... named ACC Player of the Week Nov. 14.
Kevin Swinton -- Fr., F, 6-7, Greensboro, NC The freshman's numbers -- 2.0 ppg and 3.5 rpg -- don't reflect how valuable he has been... playing time has increased to 12 minutes per game since ACC play began... has been solid off the bench in January... struggling at the free throw line (8-of-24).
Kyle Visser -- Jr., C, 6-11, Grand Rapids, MI Came off the bench Wednesday night for the first time all season... played extremely well in November and early December, but has struggled in January... has scored just 10 points over the last five games while playing an average of 13 minutes per contest... has scored in double figures just once in his last nine games... Wake's leader in blocked shots with 25... made his only three-point field goal attempt of the year, at Elon.
Eric Williams -- Sr., C, 6-9, Wake Forest, NC Has scored in double figures in 34 of his last 35 games... has averaged more than 17 points and 13 rebounds over his last three games... has two double-doubles over his last three contests... had 21 points (on 9-of-12 shooting) and 11 rebounds Wednesday against Georgia Tech... managed 10 points last Sunday at Maryland despite first-half foul trouble and zero first-half points... enjoyed a 22-point, career-high 20-rebound performance against Clemson Jan. 11... his 20 rebounds were the most by a player in the ACC this season, the most by a Deacon since 1997 and the most by a Clemson opponent since 1975... is a respectable 14-of-23 from the free throw line over the last four games... has scored at least nine points in every game this season.


Big E 8th Nationally In FG Percentage
Deacon senior Eric Williams has always produced a high field goal percentage. This season, however, he has rarely missed.
Williams leads the ACC and ranks eighth nationally in field goal percentage (.653). He is one of just three players in the ACC shooting better than 60 percent.
Williams is a remarkable 113-of-173 from the field. It helps that he has 30 dunks this season and 156 dunks for his career.
His 65.3 field goal percentage, if it held throughout the season, would shatter the Wake Forest single-season record of 63.5 percent. Williams' career field goal percentage (.594) ranks second in Wake Forest history and 13th in ACC history.

Statistically Speaking
- Wake Forest has leads the ACC and ranks fifth nationally in rebound margin (+9.1)... the Deacons rank third in the league in field goal percentage defense (.392)... the Deacons are in the middle of the ACC pack in almost every other category, except for two... Wake ranks 11th in the league (and 299th nationally) in steals per game... the Deacons rank last in the ACC in turnover margin and 11th in assist-turnover ratio... in conference games only, Wake Forest ranks first in the league in rebound margin (+9.0) and offensive rebounds (17.0) and the Deacons rank second in scoring offense (77.2).
- Justin Gray ranks in the top 10 in the ACC in six statistical categories... he is second in the ACC and 42nd nationally in scoring (19.9)... ranks second in the ACC and 39th nationally in three-point field goals per game (3.1)... he is third in the ACC three-point percentage (.417)... Gray is fourth in the ACC in free throw percentage (.842)... leads the team and ranks ninth in the league in assists per game (3.9)... averaging 34.8 minutes of action per game, which ranks sixth in the ACC.
- Eric Williams leads the ACC and ranks eighth nationally in field goal percentage (.653)... ranks second in the league in defensive rebounds (5.9)... ranks third in the ACC rebounding (8.7) and 12th in scoring (16.2)... only six players in the ACC attempt more free throws per game.
- Trent Strickland ranks seventh in the ACC in rebounding (7.6) and fourth in defensive rebounds (4.9)... one of three Deacons in the top 25 in the ACC in scoring (24th at 12.5)... ranks sixth in the ACC with four double-doubles.
- Kyle Visser leads the team and ranks seventh in the ACC in blocked shots per game (1.5).

Strickland Has Four Double-Doubles
Senior Trent Strickland, prior to this season, had never recorded a double-double. This season, he is tied for sixth in the ACC with four.
Strickland entered his senior season with a career-high of eight rebounds. This season he has five games with at least 10 rebounds, including a 16-rebound effort against Texas Tech.

Justin Gray One Of The Most Prolific Three-Point Shooters In ACC History
Senior guard Justin Gray has made 277 career three-point field goals -- the third-most in Wake Forest history and the 10th-most in ACC history.
Gray is 12 three-point field goals away from passing former Deacon Robert O'Kelley (288 career three-pointers) for second place in Wake Forest history and ninth place in ACC history. He has a chance to become just the ninth player in ACC history to sink 300 career three-pointers.
Gray has made at least one three-point field goal in 66 of his last 68 games.
He has attempted 724 career three-point field goals, ranking third in Deacon history.

Deacons Broke School Record After
Earning 60th Straight Ranking
Wake Forest's streak of being ranked in the Associated Press top 25 ended Jan. 9 after 60 consecutive weeks.
Wake was ranked in every AP poll from Dec. 23, 2002 through Jan. 2, 2006. In five seasons under coach Skip Prosser, Wake Forest has been ranked in the AP poll every week but six. Earlier this season, Wake broke the school record of 54 straight weeks ranked held by Deacon teams of the Tim Duncan era from 1995 to 1997.

Deacon Schedule A Strong One
Officially, Wake Forest has played just two games against a nationally-ranked opponent. That statistic is certainly misleading considering that two of Wake's losses have come against teams currently ranked No. 1 (Duke) and No. 2 (Florida) in the national polls.
To clarify, Florida was not ranked when the Gators beat the Deacons back in November. Florida has since shot up the polls to No. 2.
More on the difficulty of Wake Forest's schedule:
- Wisconsin was not ranked in the top 25 when the Deacons beat the Badgers in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Wisconsin is ranked this week.
- Seven Wake Forest opponents are ranked in the AP top 25 -- 1. Duke, 2. Florida, 14. NC State, 15. Wisconsin, 21, Boston College, 22. Maryland and 24. North Carolina.
- Other opponents, Florida State and Miami, are receiving votes in the ESPN/USA Today poll.
- Wake Forest has 13 regular season games remaining. Six of those games come against teams ranked this week in the AP top 25.

Deacons Shuffle Starting Lineup
Wake Forest coach Skip Prosser continues to tinker with the starting lineup. The Deacons used their fifth different starting five Wednesday night against Georgia Tech as senior Chris Ellis made his first start of the season.
Two players -- seniors Justin Gray and Eric Williams -- have started all 17 games. Juniors Kyle Visser and Michael Drum and freshmen Harvey Hale and Shamaine Dukes have all started at least five games each.

If The Season Ended Today...
As silly as it may be in January, it's always fun to look ahead:
... Wake Forest would be the 10th seed in the ACC Tournament and would face Georgia Tech in a first-round game.
... Thursday's collegerpi.com website, in a very early projection of the NCAA Tournament field, has Wake Forest in the tournament as a No. 9 seed. The Deacons, in this website's scenario, would play Iowa State in an opening-round game in Jacksonville, FL.

Wake Forest's Record When...
12-0 when leading at the half
11-0 when leading at the 10:00 mark
7-0 when shooting 50 percent or better
7-0 when shooting 40 percent-plus from 3-point range
0-2 when the opponent has more free throw attempts
0-3 when the opponent shoots 50 percent or better
0-5 when trailing at the half

More Milestones On The Horizon
- Eric Williams ranks 18th in Wake Forest scoring history with 1,459 career points... he is the fifth-leading active career scorer in the ACC... he ranks tied for 13th in Wake Forest career rebounding history and will break a tie with Rodney Rogers after his next board... he ranks 10th in Wake history with 562 career free throw attempts... with 94 career blocked shots, Williams has a chance to become just the eighth player in Deacon history with 100 career blocks... he is two blocks shy of tying Darius Songaila for the ninth-most rejections in school history... with his next start, Williams will tie Jim Johnstone for the eighth-most games started (105) in Wake history... Williams can breathe easier knowing it's almost mathematically impossible for him to break the school record for career personal fouls -- although, with 339 fouls, he will come close.
- Justin Gray is the third-leading active career scorer in the ACC with 1,684 points... he ranks 14th on Wake Forest's all-time scoring list... he needs 16 points to reach 1,700 for his career... he ranks third among active players in the ACC for career assists with 308... he ranks 10th on Wake's all-time career assists list... he is just the 10th Deacon all-time to record 300 career assists.
- Trent Strickland is has exactly 400 career rebounds... he is five assists shy of 100 for his career... has played in 107 career games.
- Kyle Visser is one blocked shot away from his 61st career rejection, which would tie Vytas Danelius for the 14th-most in Deacon history.

Dukes Tied Record In First Start
Freshman Shamaine Dukes made his first career start Dec. 30 against Charleston Southern and he did so in impressive fashion. Dukes scored 11 points and tied a Wake Forest freshman record by dishing out 10 assists. His 10 assists tied the school freshmen record held by both Chris Paul (at Maryland on Feb. 28, 2004) and Derrick McQueen (vs. New Mexico on Dec. 28, 1988). Dukes was named the ACC co-Rookie of the Week for his efforts.

Not Quite Like Dad, But Pretty Good
Senior Chris Ellis isn't the perimeter shooter his dad, Dale, was at Tennessee and in the NBA. Then again, few are.
Chris, however, has emerged as a dangerous three-point shooter, despite a somewhat awkward shot. He is 14-of-31 (.452) from three-point range this season.
Ellis had no three-pointers as a freshman or sophomore, and he made 11 all of last season as a junior.
Ellis would rank second in the ACC in three-point percentage, but does not have enough attempts to qualify. He ranks second on the team with 20 blocked shots.

Not Bad For A Non-Scholarship Guy
Junior transfer Michael Drum may be a non-scholarship player, but he's not your typical walk-on. Drum played two seasons at Presbyterian College before transferring to Wake Forest, where his mother is employed.
Drum started in the season opener, becoming the first non-scholarship player to start for the Deacons since Jim Fitzpatrick in 1999-00. Drum started the first four games of the season. Fitzpatrick made five starts as a walk-on senior.
Even when coming off the bench, Drum has been solid. He averages 4.6 points per game, has made 11 three-point field goals, is one of Wake's best free throw shooters at 78.8 percent and he owns the team's best assist-to-turnover ratio.

Season Tickets All Gone
Wake Forest established a first this season by completely selling out of season tickets. Capacity at Lawrence Joel Coliseum is 14,665.

Miscellaneous Notes
- Several members of the Wake Forest team attended the Jan. 16 Charlotte Bobcats-New Orleans Hornets game in Charlotte to watch former Deacon Chris Paul in action.
- Former Deacon Scott Benken, a walk-on who graduated in the spring of 2004, has re-surfaced in college basketball. A graduate student at the University of Cincinnati. Benken has joined the Bearcat squad for his final year of eligibility.
- Wake Forest and Lawrence Joel Coliseum will host NCAA Tournament 1st and 2nd round games in March of 2007.
- Wake Forest saw its 21-game home court win streak end Dec. 13 against DePaul.
- The Deacons have won their last five non-conference road games.
- Wake Forest has won 12 straight season openers dating back to a Nov. 25, 1993 loss to Alaska-Anchorage in the opening round of the Great Alaska Shootout.
- The Deacons have not lost a home opener since Nov. 28, 1988, against Richmond, 74-61.

 
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WFU Deacons plays at No. 14 NC State Wolfpack on Saturday
Wake Forest coach Skip Prosser is 106-40 (.726) in his fifth season with the Demon Deacons.
photo by Gene Galin
 
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