Tech, Wake look to break streaks

Chris Coleman, TechSideline.com, on January 22, 2014
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Time: 7pm
TV: RSN

Virginia Tech will look to snap a four game winning streak against the worst road team in the ACC on Wednesday night in Cassell Coliseum.  Likewise, the Demon Deacons will look to snap a skid of their own.

Wake Forest under Jeff Bzdeliz is just 1-27 in ACC road games, with their lone win coming over Boston College.  When Bzdekiz was at Colorado, his teams managed to go just 1-23 in Big 12 road games, with their only win coming at Nebraska.  With a 2-50 road conference record in his coaching career at major schools, it’s easy to see the Hokies ending their losing streak tonight.

However, Tech is only favored by 1.5 points, and Wake Forest has a better overall team at 12-6.  It sounds like we’ll see a good one tonight in Cassell.  The Demon Deacons are 2-3 in the ACC, with home wins over UNC and NC State, and road losses to UVA, Pitt and Clemson.

Here’s a look at Bzdelik’s starting lineup…

Madison Jones (6-1, 160, So.): Jones only averages 3.8 points per game while running the point for Wake Forest.  He is second on the team with 64 assists.

Codi Miller-McIntyre (6-3, 195, So.): Miller-McIntyre leads Wake Forest in scoring, averaging 15.3 points per game.  The talented sophomore gets most of his points inside the arc.  He’s only a 25.5% three-point shooter.

Travis McKie (6-7, 220, Sr.): It seems like McKie has been at Wake Forest forever.  The senior averages 9.2 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.  His scoring is down this year.  He averaged 13 points as a freshman, 16.1 points as a sophomore, and 13.5 points as a junior.  He’s had some good games against the Hokies through the years, including a 20 point performance in Cassell Coliseum last season.

Tyler Cavanaugh (6-9, 230, So.): Cavanaugh is another sophomore starter for Wake Forest.  He averages 9.1 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.  He’s a solid power forward.  Last year as a freshman he missed an easy put back that would have given Jeff Bzdelik two career ACC road wins.  Cavanaugh can also step out and hit the open three-pointer, so the Hokies will have to extend their defense a bit when he has the ball.

Devin Thomas (6-9, 245, So.): Thomas is the fourth sophomore in Wake’s lineup.  He averages 11.2 points and 8.6 points per game.  Thomas is a very efficient ACC big man who finishes well down low.  Joey van Zegeren and Cadarian Rains (assuming he plays) are going to have to be physical tonight and keep Thomas from catching the ball cleanly down low.

Coron Williams (6-1, 175, r-Sr.) is a transfer from Robert Morris.  He is the first guy off the bench for Wake Forest, and he’s originally from Midlothian, VA.  He averages 9.9 points per game, and he is easily Wake Forest’s top three-point shooter at 40.2%.  On the whole, Wake doesn’t shoot it well from the outside.  They are just 31.8% from three-point range, and Williams has nearly half of his team’s three-pointers.

Wake Forest is 11-0 at home, 0-4 on the road, and 1-2 in neutral site games.  Convential wisdon says that Tech will win this game tonight, right?  Not so fast.  The Hokies are just 7-5 in Cassell Coliseum this season, and they’ve lost four of their last five home games.  Tech has lost to USC Upstate and UNC Greensboro at home this year, so that certainly leaves open the possibility of a Wake Forest “upset”.


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