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Feb. 21, 2003


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The Game
Virginia stands at 14-10 overall and 5-7 in the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2002-2003. The Cavaliers have lost their last three games and are coming off a 73-64 loss to Clemson (Feb. 18) at University Hall. Wake Forest, ranked 10th in The Associated Press and 11th in the USAToday/ESPN Top 25 polls, stands at 18-4 overall and 8-3 in the ACC this season. In its last game, the Demon Deacons defeated Georgia Tech 75-67 (Feb. 20) in Atlanta, Ga.

The Series vs. Wake Forest
Virginia led the all-time series with Wake Forest entering the 1990s, but the Demon Deacons have had the better of the Cavaliers the last decade and now lead the series 59-56. The Deacs have won 13 of the last 20 meetings and 18 of the 31 matchups since the 1989-90 season. UVa, however, has won six of the last 11 games, including an 85-75 win (Jan. 23) earlier this season in Charlottesville. The home team has won the past five matchups in the series.

The Cavaliers split the 2001-2002 season series with Wake Forest with both teams winning on their home floor. UVa won the first meeting 86-74 (Jan. 15) in Charlottesville, while the Demon Deacons took a 92-70 decision (Feb. 17) in Winston-Salem. The two teams also split the 2000-2001 season series with both teams winning at home. Wake won the first meeting in the 2000-2001 season 96-73 (Jan. 2) in Winston-Salem in a matchup of two top 10 teams (UVa was ranked eighth in the AP poll and Wake was fourth). Virginia won the second meeting 82-71 (Feb. 3) in Charlottesville.

Virginia has not had much luck on the western end of Tobacco Road. The Cavaliers are 3-10 in the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum and 11-31 all-time in Winston-Salem against Wake Forest. Virginia has lost its last two games at Wake Forest and seven of the last eight. UVa snapped a five-game losing streak to the Deacs at Lawrence Joel Coliseum with a 76-67 win in the 1999-2000 season (Jan. 30). Previously, the Cavaliers’ last victory at Wake was a 61-59 win on January 26, 1994.

Tough to Shoot Well vs. Wake Forest
Virginia has had a rough time on the offensive end against Wake Forest since the 1989-90 season. The Cavaliers have shot 46 percent or better against Wake Forest just seven times in the last 31 games. All seven games resulted in Virginia wins. The Cavaliers are 13-18 vs. Wake Forest since 1989-90.

UVa has shot 41.0 percent from the floor and averaged 66.2 points per game against Wake Forest since 1989-90.

Similarly, the Cavalier defense has been almost as stingy as Wake’s. The Deacons have made 43.4 percent of their field goal attempts over the last 31 meetings and have averaged 68.3 points per game.

Wake Forest topped 50 percent shooting from the floor only five times since 1989-90.

Virginia vs. a Top 10 Wake Team
The Cavaliers are 3-9 all-time vs. Wake Forest when the Demon Deacons have been ranked in the top 10 of The Associated Press Top 25 Poll (including 1-2 vs. a #10 Wake team). UVa is 0-5 vs. a top 10 Wake Forest team in Winston-Salem.

The last time UVa played a top 10 Wake team was January 2, 2001 with the Demon Deacons winning 96-73 in Winston-Salem.

Earlier This Season Against Wake Forest
Virginia halted a three-game skid with an impressive 85-75 victory over then 17th-ranked Wake Forest (Jan. 23) at University Hall. The Cavaliers shot 50.8 percent (30-59) from the field in the game and limited the Demon Deacons to 34.5 percent (10-29) shooting in the second half.

Junior guard Todd Billet led all scorers with 23 points and added three assists and two steals. Senior forward/center Travis Watson registered his eighth double-double of the season with 11 points and 13 rebounds. He also handed out a career-high five assists and had two steals. Sophomore guard/forward Devin Smith contributed 17 points, while sophomore forward Jason Clark added 10 points.

Wake Forest got off to a great start as it made its first five field goal attempts of the game, including four threes, to take an early 14-9 lead. The Demon Deacons led by as many as eight points (31-23) in the opening stanza. UVa led 43-41 at the intermission despite Wake Forest’s 57.7 percent (15-26) shooting from the floor.

In the second half, the Cavaliers shot 55.6 percent (15-27) from the field. UVa opened up a nine-point lead (53-44) five minutes into the second half and never saw its lead shrink to less than four points.

The Cavaliers held Wake Forest to 45.5 percent (25-55) shooting in the game, while UVa connected on 50.8 percent (30-59) of its attempts. The Demon Deacons outrebounded Virginia 34-32. Virginia had 19 assists in the game while committing 13 turnovers.

Josh Howard and Vytas Danelius led Wake Forest with 20 points apiece, while Taron Downey added 19 points.

Back-to-Back Home Losses
The Cavaliers have lost their last two home games (78-59 vs. Duke – Feb. 15 and 73-64 vs. Clemson – Feb. 18) and it stopped a streak of 74 games at University Hall since UVa has dropped back-to-back home games. The streak dated back to the 1997-98 season. The previous time Virginia was defeated in consecutive home games was during the 1997-98 season when the Cavaliers lost consecutive home games to Florida State (Feb. 4), 71-63 and North Carolina (Feb. 11), 60-45. UVa also lost to Duke (Jan. 24), 72-65 which was the first of three consecutive home losses.

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