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ACC Roundball Roundup 1/25

NCAA Basketball: Clemson at Virginia Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday, January 18th

#2 Virginia 64 - GEORGIA TECH 48

Recap here.

NC STATE 72 - Wake Forest 63

NC State scored the game’s final 11 points and knocked off Wake Forest 72-63. The Deacons led 63-61 after C Doral Moore’s dunk with about 4 12 minutes remaining. From that point on Wake went ice cold, missing their final 7 field goals. NC State C Omer Yurtseven continued his strong recent play, leading the Wolfpack with 22 points and 8 rebounds. The Turkish sophomore is averaging 13.6 ppg and is starting to show some of the promise that has him climbing NBA draft boards. PG Bryant Crawford led Wake with 18 points, but was a poor 5/18 from the field, including 0/6 from deep.

Saturday, January 20th

NCAA Basketball: Pittsburgh at Duke
Wendell Carter Jr.
Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

#5 DUKE 81 - Pittsburgh 54

Duke cruised to another easy win against Pitt on Saturday, jumping out a big lead early and cruising the rest of the way. At halftime, the Blue Devils led 48-26 and Pitt had more turnovers than field goals. The Panthers played a bit better in the second half but it was far too little, far too late. Freshman F Wendell Carter Jr was outstanding, scoring 21 points on 9/10 shooting plus grabbing 8 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, and 3 blocks. Even with the early lead, the Duke bench still contributed only 2 points on the day. Pitt was led by freshman G Parker Stewart, who scored 15 points - the 7th time he hit double figures over the last 8 games.

#15 NORTH CAROLINA 80 - Georgia Tech 66

Recap here.

#20 CLEMSON 67 - Notre Dame 58

Clemson finally got their first ever win against Notre Dame, defeating the Irish 67-58 despite losing star F Donte Grantham to a knee injury halfway through the second half. Grantham went down with 10:54 remaining in the game with what would later be revealed to be a season-ending torn ACL. The Tigers led for most of the game, though the Irish never gave up, cutting the lead down to 1 at one point late in the second half. Some timely shots from Clemson’s unsung heroes put the Tigers over the top. G Gabe DeVoe led Clemson with 17 points, while Shelton Mitchell contributed 12 points, 10 of them coming in big moments down the stretch. G TJ Gibbs led Notre Dame with 18 points.

Florida State 91 - VIRGINIA TECH 82

After beating UNC on January 3rd, Florida State entered a bit of slump, losing 3 of 4 and struggling to shoot from deep. On Saturday in Blacksburg, the Noles turned things around, stealing a tough road win and hitting on 45% of their three pointers. Freshman G M.J. Walker came off the bench to have his best game, scoring 24 points on 8/13 shooting (4/7 from 3) and grabbing 6 rebounds. Virginia Tech was dominated on the glass, losing the rebound battle 25-37. G Justin Robinson led the Hokies with 26 points.

Sunday, January 21st

#2 Virginia 59 - WAKE FOREST 49

Wake Forest did all they could to pull a massive upset, even leading at points in the second half, but didn’t have the firepower to overcome Virginia’s suffocating defense. The Cavaliers struggled to score early, putting up just 22 first half points, but broke through in the second half of the second half, eventually building to a 10-point victory. Kyle Guy and Devon Hall were both perfect at the free throw line in crunch time, stopping any hopes of a Wake comeback. Guy led Virginia with 17 points while Wake Forest was led by Bryant Crawford’s 11 points on 4/12 shooting. C. Doral Moore was more efficient, hitting on 4 of 5 shots for 9 points, 13 rebounds, and 3 blocks.

#25 Miami 86 - NC STATE 81

Miami needed every bit of their best offensive showing in nearly two months to bring home a win from Raleigh. After struggling to find a flow early in ACC play, the Hurricanes exploded on Sunday hitting on 57.6% of their field goals and 10 of 19 three pointers while committing just 10 turnovers against the Pack’s pressure defense. Four Hurricanes scored in double-figures, led by G Bruce Brown Jr., who scored 19 points on 7/8 shooting and dished 9 assists. On the other side, NC State had a pretty big game of their own, shooting 54.4% from the field and 39% from deep. Omer Yurtseven was outstanding yet again, scoring 28 points. Markell Johnson did not score but was a key contributor, setting his teammates up to the tune of 14 assists.

LOUISVILLE 77 - Boston College 69

After a tight first half, Louisville exploded out of the locker room on a 12-2 run to build a commanding lead over the visiting Eagles. With 3:57 left, the Cardinals led by 18 and it was time to start pulling out the starters. Boston College had other ideas. Over the next couple minutes, BC chipped away at the lead until Jordan Chatman sank a 3 with 33 seconds left to cut Louisville’s lead to just 2 points. From there it was a free throw game and the Cardinals connected, sealing the win. Louisville F Deng Adel recorded a double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Despite the furious comeback, Boston College’s star guards really struggled with their shots. Jerome Robinson led the Eagles with 19 points but needed 16 field goal attempts. Ky Bowman was even more inefficient, scoring 16 points on 5/22 shooting.

Monday, January 22nd

NCAA Basketball: North Carolina at Virginia Tech
Justin Robinson
Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports

VIRGINIA TECH 80 - #10 North Carolina 69

Virginia Tech closed the first half on a 15-2 run and never looked back after the break, bouncing back to knock off #10 UNC in Blacksburg. The Tar Heels looked poised to make a game of it about midway through the second half but Ahmed Hill and the Hokies responded to put the game away with a 13-3 run. Hill finished the day with 18 points, just a bit behind leading scorer Justin Robinson’s 19. North Carolina didn’t get a whole lot outside of their two stars. Luke Maye and Joel Berry II each scored 23 points, equaling the output of every other player on the roster combined.

Tuesday, January 23rd

#2 VIRGINIA 61 - #18 Clemson 36

Late in the first half, Clemson led this game 23-16 and looked like they might just be alright after the loss of senior captain Donte Grantham over the weekend. Then Virginia’s defense took over the game. The Tigers didn’t score again in the first half and only scored 13 points the entire second half. The Cavaliers totaled a whopping 14 steals and held the Tigers to just 15% shooting from beyond the arc. The only Tiger to hit double figures was G Gabe DeVoe, who scored all 11 of his points before Clemson went ice cold. Devon Hall led Virginia with 14 points but it was the truly masterful team defensive performance that stole the headlines for Virginia.

#4 Duke 84 - WAKE FOREST 70

Duke’s gotten headlines this year for their offensive acumen but on Tuesday, it was their defense that got them the win at Wake Forest. On a night when they only hit 31.6% of their 3-pointers and were out rebounded, the Blue Devils recorded 11 steals and forced the Deacons into a season-high 21 turnovers. Duke’s guards struggled by their lofty standards but the big men still put up big offensive numbers. Wendell Carter Jr put in 23 points and 12 rebounds and Marvin Bagley III added 16 and 11 of his own. The biggest bright spot for Wake Forest was the play of their own big man, Doral Moore. The junior center more than held his own against his more heralded opposition, hitting all 9 of his field goals for 18 points and 12 rebounds.

Wednesday, January 24th

FLORIDA STATE 88 - Georgia Tech 77

Recap here.

SYRACUSE 81 - Boston College 63

Fresh off a week-long break between games, Syracuse put up one of their best offensive performances of the season, easily beating Boston College. The Orange took a 21 point lead early in the second half and never looked back. For the night, they hit on 60.4% of their field goal attempts. Five players scored in double-figures, led by G Tyus Battle’s 24 points on 9/14 shooting. Despite quickly turning into a blowout, Syracuse relied almost entirely on five players. Battle, C Paschal Chukwu, and F Oshae Brissett played all 40 minutes while G Frank Howard played 38 and F Marek Dolezaj came off the bench to play 35 minutes. Jim Boeheim’s crew will need to develop at least a little more bench depth to survive the long ACC season. On the other side, Boston College actually shot pretty well (47.7% from the field, 47.8% from deep) but struggled with turnovers and rebounding. G Ky Bowman scored 20 points to pace the Eagles.

MIAMI 78 - Louisville 75 (OT)

Miami fell out of the rankings for the first time all season but bounced back to defeat Louisville in overtime. In a thrilling back-and-forth game, Louisville took a 69-67 lead with 14 seconds left after C Anas Mahmoud went 1 for 2 at the free throw line. Miami’s freshman phenom Lonnie Walker IV drove the length of the court to tie the game with a layup in traffic. Both teams struggled in overtime - Louisville didn’t hit a field goal and Miami went only 5-10 at the free throw line - but eventually the Hurricanes emerged victorious. The tying layup was just part of a really strong performance for Walker, who led all scorers with 25 points. Louisville was led by PG Quentin Snider’s 18 points.

NC State 72 - PITTSBURGH 68

It looked like Pitt might finally get their first ACC win of the season but a late 11-0 run put NC State ahead for good and let the Wolfpack steal the win. Pitt’s 2-3 zone defense frustrated NCST’s shooters, leading to a season-low 34% from the field, but the Panthers went cold at the wrong time. Pitt missed 6 of their last 7 shots after taking a 66-57 lead with just under 6 minutes remaining. NC State took the lead for good on a Braxton Beverly 3 pointer and sealed the game with a pair of free throws by Allerik Freeman. C Omer Yurtseven led the Pack with 16 points and G Markell Johnson dished out 12 assists. G Jared Wilson-Frame was Pitt’s leading scorer with 22 points.

Looking ahead...

Saturday is a big day for the ACC, headlined by #2 Virginia heading into Cameron Indoor to face #4 Duke. The game is a matchup of the nation’s best defense and one of the most prolific offenses. Tipping off at 2:00 pm on CBS, this promises to be one of the best games of the season. Also on Saturday are a pair of big rivalry games: NC State at #10 North Carolina and Miami at Florida State. If Clemson can survive a trip to Atlanta on Sunday, they may just hang in the Top 25, setting up Tuesday’s rematch with North Carolina to be another ranked matchup.

ACC Standings as of 1/24

Team ACC Record Overall Record
Team ACC Record Overall Record
#2 Virginia 8-0 19-1
#4 Duke 6-2 18-2
Louisville 5-2 15-5
#18 Clemson 5-3 16-4
#10 North Carolina 5-3 16-5
Miami 4-3 15-4
Florida State 4-4 15-5
NC State 4-4 14-7
Syracuse 3-4 14-6
Virginia Tech 3-4 14-6
Notre Dame 3-4 13-7
Georgia Tech 3-4 10-10
Boston College 3-5 13-8
Wake Forest 1-7 8-12
Pittsburgh 0-8 8-13