Wake Forest-Virginia Preview

Now that Mike Scott is back with Virginia, it may finally be in

position to end a frustrating losing streak against Wake


Scott will try to help the No. 19 Cavaliers end a six-game slide

to the Demon Deacons in Wednesday night’s ACC matchup in


Virginia (18-4, 5-3) has not beaten Wake Forest (11-12, 2-7)

since an 88-76 home victory Jan. 21, 2007. The Demon Deacons’ 76-71

home win last Jan. 29 was their lone ACC victory of the


Scott was out with an ankle injury for that game and received a

medical hardship waiver to play a fifth season. He’s averaging a

career-high 17.0 points to go with 8.5 rebounds to lead the


“Mike’s had a very good year,” coach Tony Bennett said. “He’s

certainly (seeing) a lot of the defenses are gearing up to stop

him. But he’s played hard. He’s hit big shots for us, and he’s been


The 6-foot-8 Scott has posted double-doubles in his last two

games, with 16 points and 11 rebounds in Saturday’s 58-55 loss at

then-No. 21 Florida State. He’s averaged 6.8 points on 35.3 percent

shooting while totaling 20 rebounds in four career losses to the

Demon Deacons.

“Well, he’s a real tough matchup, he really is,” Wake Forest

coach Jeff Bzdelik said. “He’ll post up mid-range. He can shoot

over the top of you. You put length on him, and he scores in a

variety of ways. He can take bigger guys out. It’s hard.”

While Virginia is second in the country in yielding 51.4 points

per game, Wake Forest is one of the worst in the conference at

70.7. The Cavaliers control the tempo by turning the ball over an

ACC-low 11.5 times per game.

“You get nothing easy with Virginia,” Bzdelik said. “Their

offense helps their defense. I think that’s a key phrase. Their

offense helps their defense because they don’t turn it over.”

Wake Forest has dropped 15 of 16 ACC road games since its last

trip to Virginia, a 64-61 overtime victory Feb. 6, 2010. That Demon

Deacons team featured future NBA players Al-Farouq Aminu and Ish


This team is led by C.J. Harris, second in the ACC with 17.5

points per game. Harris had team highs of 15 points and seven

assists to spark last season’s win over Virginia.

“I think they’re probably one of the most improved teams in our

league,” Bennett said. “(Bzdelik) has done a great job. They added

some personnel and they’re playing certainly very competitive good


Each team’s best 3-point shooter is named Harris. C.J. Harris is

the ACC’s best at 45.6 percent while Virginia’s Joe Harris has made

12 of his last 21 attempts from beyond the arc.

The Cavaliers’ Sammy Zeglinski, meanwhile, has made 2 of 12 3s

over the last two games.

“It wasn’t that he was leaving it short,” said Bennett about

Zeglinski’s shooting woes. “He certainly shot them strong, but I

didn’t see anything particularly from, I guess, a square-up

technique or an issue that looked different in his shot.”