WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Clemson overcame an eight-point halftime deficit and scored 56 points after intermission, most in any half in 185 games under coach Brad Brownell, on its way to a 76-62 win at Wake Forest on Tuesday. The win improved the Tigers to 14-8 overall, 7-3 in the ACC. Wake Forest fell to 10-12 overall, 1-9 in league play.
Jaron Blossomgame continued his tear, amassing a double-double with 22 points and 13 rebounds. He now has five straight ACC games with at least 20 points, most by a Tiger since Horace Grant did it in 1986-87. Jordan Roper, Avry Holmes and Donte Grantham sparked the impressive showing in the second half. Holmes scored 17, Roper 16 and Grantham 15 as the Tigers relentlessly attacked the rim after halftime.
Clemson overcame a poor start and made 55 percent of its field goal attempts and was 21-23 from the free throw line after the break. The Tigers also owned the glass, going +8 in the final 20 minutes against the Demon Deacons.
The turnover miscues from Saturday’s game at Florida State seemed to follow the Tigers early on, as Clemson committed six in the game’s first 14 minutes. As a result, Clemson struggled to extend the lead. Grantham hit three free throws to keep the Deacons at bay, but Dinos Mitoglou tied the game at 18 with a corner three-pointer with five minutes to play.
From there, Wake extended its cushion to 28-20 at halftime as Clemson made just one field goal after a Sidy Djitte hook shot with 11:24 to play. The Tigers were just 1-10 from three and had nine turnovers in the opening half.
Clemson scored the first 11 after intermission, and took its first lead since early in the ballgame. The Tigers would stretch the lead to as much as 48-40 on a jumper from Roper. But Wake answered with seven straight, closing the gap to a single point. Clemson’s answer back was emphatic, with Roper and Grantham putting together slams in consecutive trips. After that, the Deacs never threatened again as Clemson salted the game away at the line in the final five minutes.The Tigers finish their three-game road trip with a battle at Virginia Tech on Saturday. Clemson squares off with the Hokies at 4 p.m. in Cassell Coliseum.
- Clemson won its third game in Lawrence Joel Coliseum (1990, 2012, 2016) on Tuesday in 21 trips to Winston-Salem.
- The Tigers followed their lowest scoring half of the season (20) with their highest (56).
- The 56 points were the most in any half in 185 games under head coach Brad Brownell. The point total was the highest since the 2008-09 team scored 59 against Maryland in the second half on February 17.
- Clemson made 26-30 free throws Tuesday to boost its accuracy to 80 percent in ACC games (180-225).
- Tuesday’s game was the first time the Tigers scored at least 75 in an ACC road win since Feb. 11, 2012, which coincidentally was also the last time Clemson won at Wake Forest.
- Jaron Blossomgame scored 22 points, his fifth straight ACC game with at least 20. He is the first Tiger to do it in five consecutive ACC games since Horace Grant in 1986-87.
- Blossomgame needs 53 points to reach 1,000 for his career.
- Blossomgame had a double-double, his first in an ACC game this season.
- Blossomgame led all players with 13 rebounds, tying Sidy Djitte and Landry Nnoko for the most by a Tiger in a game this season.
- Jordan Roper scored 16 points, all in the second half. It was his highest point total since scoring 18 in a win over Miami on January 16.
- Avry Holmes finished with 17 points, his highest total in an ACC game.
- Holmes made three shots from three-point range, his highest total since the Syracuse game on January 5.
- Donte Grantham made a career-high nine free throws Tuesday.