Princeton 42

(2-6, 1-2 away)

(16) Wake Forest 61

(8-2, 6-2 home)

4:00 PM ET, December 17, 2005

Lawrence Joel Coliseum, Winston-salem, North Carolina

1 2 T
PRIN 24 1842
#16WAKE 33 2861

Top Performers

Princeton: K. Koncz 17 Pts, 2 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl

Wake Forest: T. Strickland 13 Pts, 9 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Blk

Williams, Gray power No. 16 Wake rout of Princeton

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) -- Right now is not a good time to be a member of the Princeton Tigers. Despite doubling their point total from the previous game, they still got beat by 19 points.

"It's called having a young team," coach Joe Scott said. "We play well at times, we don't play well at times."

He saw a little bit of both Saturday.

Eric Williams had 15 points and Justin Gray added 14, helping No. 16 Wake Forest bounce back from a rare home loss to beat Princeton 61-42.

Trent Strickland scored 13 points and finished one rebound short of his third double-double in four games for the Demon Deacons (8-2), who were beaten by DePaul on Wednesday night to end their 21-game winning streak at Lawrence Joel Coliseum. It was tied for the fifth longest in the nation.

"As players, we were more upset than anything," Strickland said. "We all had a sitdown and we all came to the conclusion that we want to make this year special for us, and we can't have any games like that."

The Tigers (2-6) appeared to be the perfect opponent to start a new run. They were coming off a 41-21 loss to Monmouth, the lowest-scoring Division I game since the introduction of the 3-point line. Princeton was 9-of-41 from the field in that one -- 2-of-20 from beyond the arc -- and had 19 turnovers for its worst offensive effort since also finishing with 21 points against Penn in 1936.

"The other night was an aberration," Scott said. "People want to make a big deal about it, but who cares? We lost that game. We did not shoot it well, turned the ball over and just played poorly."

For slightly more than one half Saturday, the Tigers looked nothing like that team. They created plenty of open looks with their patented offense and made eight 3s to make this one very competitive. Geoff Kestler had the last one of that stretch to cut Wake Forest's lead to 40-34 with about 14 minutes remaining.

Williams responded with a dunk on the other end, starting a 21-3 run that must have looked very familiar to the Tigers. They went 6½ minutes without a point before Kyle Koncz swished a 3-pointer and then were scoreless for another 5½ minutes.

"I think the style they play, they take possessions away from the game," Gray said. "If you're not making shots, you're not going to have that many points."

Meanwhile, the Deacons were just getting started. They finished their big spurt brilliantly, with Strickland soaring high to catch a pass from Gray before slamming it through the rim. Gray made consecutive 3s for a 61-37 lead to force a timeout from Scott, but it hardly mattered at that point.

"The one way they can certainly hurt you is with shooting 3-pointers," Wake Forest coach Skip Prosser said. "Last game, they were 2-for-20, so we were certain they would shoot better. We have an inclination to cure people's shooting woes."

Koncz had 17 points for the Tigers, who were without key reserve Luke Owings (flu). Their only senior, Scott Greenman, sat out with an injured back, leaving Scott with a rotation that featured two juniors, four sophomores and three freshmen.

"Coach said that we're young, but we can't use that as an excuse," Koncz said. "We've got to mature faster. We've had a lot of freshmen and sophomores out there, but when we play the way we want to play, we play well."

Wake Forest dominated statistically, as might be expected, and the 39-15 advantage in rebounding was record-setting: The Tigers' total was the fewest for an opponent since the Deacons joined the Atlantic Coast Conference in 1953-54.

Princeton's struggles over the past two games are perhaps best highlighted by leading scorer Noah Savage. He reached double figures in five of the first six games and was averaging 15 points, but he has been held to three points combined in the past two games.

All those came on a 3-pointer about four minutes into the game against Wake Forest, and he missed his final 11 shots. Over the past three games, he is 3-for-25.

"I'm asking him to do everything," Scott said. "He brings the ball up the court, then plays center, and he's really a forward. I think that explains why the guy is 1-for-12."

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 42 61
FG Made-Attempted 15-44 (.341) 24-44 (.545)
3P Made-Attempted 10-22 (.455) 6-12 (.500)
FT Made-Attempted 2-2 (1.000) 7-16 (.438)
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 17 (0/0) 11 (0/0)
Largest Lead 3 24

2005-06 Season

» Dec 17, 2005 @WAKE 61, PRIN 42Recap