Demon Deacons and Cavs meet in ACC affairFeb 8, 2012 - 3:41 PM Charlottesville, VA (Sports Network) - The Wake Forest Demon Deacons will attempt to snap their four-game losing streak tonight as they head to the John Paul Jones Arena for an Atlantic Coast Conference battle against the 19th- ranked Virginia Cavaliers.
This will be the 119th meeting between Wake Forest and Virginia. The Demon Deacons hold a 69-59 advantage in the rivalry after a 76-71 victory over the Cavaliers in last season's only encounter.
Wake Forest enters tonight's game 11-12 overall and 2-7 in ACC play after its 87-76 loss to the NC State Wolfpack on Saturday. The Demon Deacons had a strong offensive performance against NC State, as they made 50 percent of their field goals and 10-of-17 from three-point range, but they allowed NC State to knock down 52.5 percent of their shots. Head coach Jeff Bzdelik's team will have to focus on the defensive end if it wants to make a run in the ACC, as it ranks last in the league with an allowed average of 70.7 ppg.
The Demon Deacons are led by the ACC's top scoring duo of C.J. Harris and Travis McKie. Harris is ranked second in the conference in scoring with 17.5 ppg and McKie is a very close behind in fifth with an average of 15.8 ppg. McKie is also leading the team in rebounding with an average of 7.2 rpg. Ty Walker, Chase Fischer, and NikitaMescheriakov combined to contribute 33 points in the recent loss to NC State.
Head coach Tony Bennett's team comes in with a 18-4 overall record and a 5-3 mark in league play after its 58-55 loss to the Florida State Seminoles on Saturday. The Cavaliers overcame a double-digit deficit before losing the bout with Florida State. Virginia's four losses have been by a combined 10 points. Virginia is an elite team defensively as it ranks second in the nation in scoring defense with an allowed average of just 51.4 ppg on 39.2 percent shooting. Only four teams have eclipsed the 60-point mark against the Cavaliers this season. Virginia's focus on the defensive end has left it with a sub par scoring average of 63.9 ppg.
Forward Mike Scott continues to lead Virginia with averages of 17.0 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. Scott is leading the ACC in field goal efficiency with a connection rate of 58.8 percent. Joe Harris complements Scott nicely from the guard slot. Harris is the team's second leading scorer with 12.7 ppg after he went 5-of-12 from the field to score 16 points against Florida State. Jontel Evans is the top distributor for the Cavaliers as he his dishing out a team- high 3.7 assists per contest.
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