WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — It’s almost like we’d been in this same situation just a few days ago though we arrived much differently.
A 20-3 Wake Forest second-half run had given them a 13-point lead with 7:22 left in the game.
Much like the 13-point lead they held with 7:01 left before the collapse three days ago to Clemson.
The Deacs (10-5, 1-2) didn’t fold Tuesday against Boston College (8-7, 1-1), however, holding off the Eagles for a 79-66 win to grab their first ACC victory of the season at Joel Coliseum.
“I thought we did a pretty nice job of contesting shots and rebounding the basketball,” Wake Forest coach Danny Manning said. “We want to play inside-out. I thought our post guys did a good job with patience.”
The 20-3 run to turn a 43-38 deficit into a 58-46 lead was huge.
Six Deacs contributed in the run and Wake forced Boston College empty possession of nine of 11 chances while they broke the game open.
“We go on that run and I don’t know if you can name a key person that was a part of it,” Manning said. “There was good ball movement. We were sharing the basketball and taking what the defense gave us. That was very important for us, because that shows balance.”
Closing out the game holding a double-digit lead the rest of the way was even more important.
“We still could do better,” Manning said about the Deacs play in the waning minutes.
Sophomore forward John Collins led the Deacs with 17 points on 6-of-11 shooting. He added seven boards, two assists and a pair of blocked shots.
Dinos Mitoglou scored 15 for Wake on 0-of-0 shooting behind the arc. Mitoglou posted up and hit 6-of-8 down low while also grabbing seven boards and dishing two assists.
“Wow,” Manning said. “That could be the case a lot more with the way teams guard Dinos. He made a concerted effort to roll into the post. He posted up when he had a guard on him and drew some fouls. That helped us get into the bonus. Dinos was very effective tonight.”
This was only the second time in his collegiate career without a 3-point attempt. He finished with nine points in his freshman campaign in 18 minutes of action against Samford without a shot behind the arc.
Austin Arians rebounded from his less-than-stellar performance against Clemson with an 12-point, five-rebound, three-assist night.
Bryant Crawford struggled from the field, going 3-for-12, but dished seven assists against just a single turnover.
The Deacs return to action at 8 p.m. Sunday at Virginia (11-2, 1-1). The Cavs play at Pittsburgh Wednesday evening.
“We have to use this as momentum for us to get better,” Manning said. “Guys are into it for the right reason. They play hard, they play together and they like each other. We feel that’s going to take us a long way.”