The Demon Deacons trailed by eight points with under two minutes left in Sunday afternoon's contest with Virginia Tech. The Hokies looked to be in charge, escaping from Winston-Salem with a hard-fought win over the Demon Deacons.
That all changed quickly thanks to some strong play, a bank-shot, and a last second show from Demon Deacon sophomore guard Ishmael Smith.
With under two minutes to play in Sunday's affair, Gary Clark was inserted into the game for a much needed spark. The coaches expected Clark, known as a good three point shooter, to give the offense a lift. After producing a steal on the defensive end, Clark did just that, knocking down a bank shot three-pointer with just 48.5 seconds left.
Clark, who had not hit a three since the first game of the season, had no issue stepping into the game cold and taking the shot. "In big-game situations I have no fear," Clark said after the game. "You're either going to miss it or you're going make it."
In this case, Clark hit it to tie the Hokies at 75. After a Jeff Allen miss, Smith stepped to the plate for heroics of his own.
Smith, who led the Deacs with 18 points, nailed a jumper with .6 seconds left in Sunday's contest to lift the Demon Deacons to 8-3, 1-0 heading into a week layoff before hosting Air Force next Sunday.
"First, I'm telling you, the players in the locker room are resilient," Smith said after the game. I just did the easy part and knocked down a shot."
"I think that was a real character win for a young basketball team," Coach Gaudio added. He also said believed that Coach Skip Prosser may have been there with the team on Sunday as well. "Maybe our buddy had a little bit to do with this one."
The Deacs will return to action next Sunday at 2:00 at the Joel Coliseum.