The Deacs were tested in round one of the ACC Tournament Tuesday.
Boston College was physical, activity and smart as they clawed to a 53-53 tie with 15:06 left in the game.
“We came out flat after halftime. They came out and brought more energy than us,” Wake Forest guard Bryant Crawford said. “We had a bench player, Greg McClinton, come off the bench and give us a lot of energy, make a few big plays for us that turned us up on the defensive end.”
But Wake responded with a decisive 14-1 run and never looked back in a 92-78 win at the Barclays Center to advance to face Virginia Tech at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the second round.
Four Deacs scored in double figures, led by 20 points by Bryant Crawford. Crawford was 11-for-12 from the free throw line, and had six assists against two turnovers.
John Collins finished the first half without a field goal attempt as he battled through frequent Boston College double teams, but still managed a double-double with 19 points and 12 rebounds.
“Their game plan was to come out and double-team John Collins every time he touched the basketball,” Manning said. “I thought we did a good job of having patience, a little bit of poise, getting guys into open spots. I thought John did a good job of getting the ball out of the post to our shooters. We had some guys knock down some shots.”
Collins had just five points at the half.
“Coach just stressed me to play harder, post harder, cut harder. There's really no change in game plan,” Collins said. “Just told me to do what I'm supposed to do: play hard basically. I think I did that in the second half.”
Austin Arians was huge early for the Deacs and finished with 17 points on 5-of-7 shooting behind the arc. Keyshawn Woods also netted 17, and Dinos Mitoglou added six points and eight boards.
“We feel like offensively we have guys across the board that are capable scorers. For us, it's all about ball movement and player movement,” Manning said. “We want the ball to find the open person. If you're open, we want you to shoot the ball if you're in your range.”