Another Must Win Tonight For Clemson

Clemson will battle the 18th ranked Wake Forest Demon Deacons in another must win game Tuesday evening at Littlejohn Coliseum. Wake Forest enters Tuesday night's game with a 13-2 record overall, and a 3-2 mark in conference play.

The Tigers, fresh off of a 5-point loss the 12th ranked Maryland Terrapins, have lost 3 out of their last 4 games and 4 out of their last 6 after starting the season 10-0.

Nonetheless, head coach Larry Shyatt remains optimistic headed into tonight's game.

"We are still a good team, in that we are a good team that's been tested by some weaker opponents. Arguably we are 14-1 with 3 more baskets. There's a lot of great teams in the country that can't make that statement," said head coach Larry Shyatt.

The Deacons lead the Tigers in the overall series played between these two teams 80-55, but Clemson holds the edge at home, 33-31. That mark a 19-15 record at Littlejohn Coliseum.

The last time these two teams squared off at Clemson, the Tigers came away with a 118-155 double overtime win.

"I was disappointed we weren't awarded two wins after that game," said Shyatt. "It was a real sensational last minute of shooting by Wake Forest, and I just remember how we felt after that."

Wake Forest enters tonight's game winners of 3 of their last 4 games, including impressive victories over Georgia Tech and Maryland.

The Demon Deacons are led in scoring by Josh Howard (18.1/game), who is likely the early season candidate for player of the year in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Howard has four straight 20-point games and is averaging 22 points in conference play.

Defensive specialist Olu Babalola will likely match up with Howard, despite being hampered with a sprained right ankle that also has a strained peroneal tendon.

Clemson continues to be led in scoring by Ed Scott (17.1/game), however the senior out of Eastover has struggled in each of his last four outings. The Terps' full-court press at the end of the first half on Saturday saw Scott commit a barrage of turnovers in a crucial 13-2 Maryland run.

Starting center Sharrod Ford leads the way on the boards with 7.6 rebounds per game. Ford ended a streak of 13 consecutive games of shooting 50% or better when he went 1-4 from the floor against Maryland.
Probable Starters
Clemson (11-4, 1-4 ACC)
G 14 Chey Christie (6-4, 178)
G 10 Ed Scott      (6-0, 175)
C 05 Sharrod Ford  (6-9, 220)
F 12 Olu Babalola  (6-6, 255)
F 43 Chris Hobbs   (6-7, 255)

Wake Forest (13-2, 3-2, ACC)
G 04 Taron Downey  (6-2, 175)
G 10 Jamaal Levy   (6-9, 180)
C 31 Eric Williams (6-9, 270)
F 05 Josh Howard   (6-6, 203)
F 00 Chris Ellis   (6-8, 250)
Other Notes
The loss to Maryland marked the 4th consecutive game that Clemson has been involved in game decided by 5 points or less. The Tigers lost to North Carolina by 2, beat Virginia by 1, lost to Florida State by 1, and then lost to Maryland by 5.

Both Ed Scott and Ray Henderson will be playing in their 100th game at Clemson University tonight. Incidentally, Scott needs just 13 points to reach the 1000-point mark in the college career.

Wake Forest has dominated the overall series between these two schools in last 6 years, winning 12 out of the last 15 games played between the two schools. The Tigers' double overtime win last year marked their first victory in the last 8 attempts against the Deacons.

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