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Aminu nets 21 as Wake Forest routs ECU

Dec 23, 2008 - 4:16 AM GREENVILLE, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Freshman Al-Farouq Aminu matched his season-high with 21 points as sixth-ranked Wake Forest dominated the second half en route to a 95-54 victory over East Carolina on Monday.

Aminu, who went 9-of-9 from the free-throw line, also grabbed 11 rebounds and dished out five assists. He also scored 21 points in the season-opening 94-48 rout of North Carolina Central.

Chas McFarland collected 14 points and nine boards and L.D. Williams scored 12 for the Demon Deacons (11-0), who shot 56 percent (37-of-66) from the field and outrebounded the Pirates by a 43-28 margin.

"I was proud of our kids," Wake Forest coach Dino Gaudio said. "I thought we played really well in the second half. I thought our second half defense was outstanding."

Reserve Darrius Morrow poured in 15 points and Sam Hinnant had nine for ECU (8-3), which shot a dismal 29 percent (18-of-62) en route to its lowest scoring output of the season.

The Pirates managed to keep the game close in the first half, heading into the break facing a 41-37 deficit. But Wake Forest showed its superiority after the intermission.

"I'm disappointed with the way we competed in the second half," ECU coach Mack McCarthy said. "This is two games in a row in which we came out of the locker room in the second half and made some mistakes offensively, which led to breakdowns defensively."

McFarland started an 11-0 run early in the second half, giving the Demon Deacons a 56-40 lead with 14:53 to play. ECU forward Jamar Abrams ended that burst, knocking down a jump shot with 13:52 left.

But the Pirates failed to hit another field goal for over 13 1/2 minutes when Morrow's layup cut the deficit to 95-51 with 80 ticks remaining.

"Wake Forest isn't just big, but they are athletic too," McCarthy said. "It was a difficult situation because we would have had to play awfully well. We did that for a half, but they played well in the second half when we didn't, so that was a bad combination.

During that 39-7 stretch, Aminu scored 11 points despite leaving the game with more than five minutes to play.

"I believe we scored on 25 of our 33 offensive possessions in the second half and we stopped ECU on 25-of-34, so obviously that was a very good combination," Gaudio said.