By: James Blackburn
North Carolina was able to get a key conference road win over Wake Forest 87-71 to move to 5-1 in league play. Wake Forest dropped to 9-10 overall and 1-5 in league play. The game notes and scouting reports of the top players are below.
- Game started off sloppy for both teams with neither team able to establish any real momentum. Both teams struggled with TO’s in first 10 minutes or so.
- Wake shot several quick and contested shots early on, which was uncharacteristic of them and this lead to some easy transition points for UNC.
- Wake was able to stay in the game by really battling on the offensive glass and showing good energy.
- Devin Thomas had a couple of scores near the middle of the 1st half that tied the game up a few times.
- Wake was staying in it by winning the battle on the boards and forcing turnovers on defense.
- Both of these teams are really struggling to shoot from the perimeter but because the pace is so fast, they are still able to score. Most of the points are coming from the FT line, offensive rebounds, and transition.
- The half ends with a lay-up for UNC to put them up 40-34
- Wake started off the 2nd half shooting perimeter jumpers and UNC started in by pounding the ball inside and getting easy points from Kennedy Meeks.
- UNC played some 2-3 zone in both halves because of Wake shooting woes but had trouble rebounding from it, so reverted back to man.
- Andre Washington is providing some good energy off the bench rebounding and blocking shots.
- With 10:00 minutes left in the game, Wake is still struggling to make any shots from the perimeter. The crowd has grown quiet but Devin Thomas has shown a lot of energy on the boards.
- Wake has been able to get some of UNC’s bigs into foul trouble and is trying to capitalize by making their FT’s (have made about 50% up to this point).
- Every time Wake scores, UNC seems to answer- with around 6 minutes to go and UNC leading by 16 pts, some of the fans start to empty out.
- Wake made a run with about 3 minutes to go and closed the deficit to 12 pts after a Madison Jones lay-up.
- UNC gets the win over Wake, which is solid considering that Wake is dangerous at home. They had Duke and Louisville beat and has proven they can compete with anyone in the ACC at home.
Devin Thomas, JR, 6’9″, 255 lbs
Stats: 4-8 FG, 4-7 FT, 12 reb, 12 pts, 31 minutes
Having trouble finishing and scoring over Kennedy Meeks early on and didnt show the willingness or ability to score with the right hand.
To give him credit he was still able to get points from his energy. Had a big dunk of an alley-oop and had an offensive board too.
Had trouble scoring with back to basket over Meeks, but was able to get points other ways. UNC couldnt keep him off the boards.
Codi Miller-McIntyre, JR, 6’3″, 205 lbs
Stats: 6-14 FG, 1-3 3 pt, 7-11 FT, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 20 pts, 31 minutes
Up and down play in the first half. Dangerous in transition with the basketball where he can finish with contact. Needs to improve 3 pt shooting. Makes some head scratching decisions and needs to improve PG decision making in general. Has been really aggressive lately which I like.
Justin Jackson, FR, 6’8″, 193 lbs
Stats: 6-8 FG, 1-2 3 pt, 4-6 FT, 3 rebounds, 2 steals, 17 pts, 34 minutes
Doing a great job of attacking the rim and drawing fouls. Needs to improve his ability to finish w/ contact and needs to add weight. I like his energy though on both ends. Has a lot of potential. Great length and athleticism- makes him a solid defensive player. Terrific in transition. Needs to improve shooting consistency and footwork to a degree.
Marcus Paige, JR, 6’1″, 175 lbs
Stats: 4-8 FG, 2-4 FT, 2-2 FT, 1 rebound, 8 assists, 3 steals, 12 points, 35 minutes
Can score in creative ways inside.
Made some poor decisions in transition early on and had slow start. Terrific ball handler who can break down his man off the dribble.
Super quick player who is smooth. Can turn the corner on P/R. Can hit the 3 coming off of staggered screens. Had several plays late that were impressive.
Was playing off the ball at times when Nate Britt was in the game.
JP Tokoto, JR, 6’6″, 200 lbs
Stats: 4-8 FG, 0-2 3 pt, 0-4 FT, 6 rebounds, 8 pts, 3 assists, 2 steals, 28 minutes
3 pt shot has hitch in it and needs to improve shooting in general. Showed some ability to create own shot this game with a nice change of direction dribble and spin move. Great motor.
Strong and athletic. Dangerous in transition where he is able to finish above the rim.
Makes plays defensively off the ball. Underrated passer who had several on target up-court passes. Good rebounder on both ends.
Kennedy Meeks, SO, 6’9″, 270 lbs
Stats: 8-11 FG, 8 rebounds, 1 blk, 16 pts, 22 minutes
Excellent hands- can catch anything. Showing better bounce in his step and energy. Tremendous rebounder on both ends. Showed some nice touch from 15′ and in. Runs the floor well. Foul prone.