Wake Forest (6-1) vs. Tennessee (4-2) (ET)
GAME NOTES: A couple of teams aiming to leave the Bahamas with at least two victories meet up in the final round of the Battle 4 Atlantis, as the Wake Forest Demon Deacons clash with the Tennessee Volunteers in the fifth-place game.
Tennessee landed on Paradise Island riding a three-game win streak, but the team was immediately taken down by UTEP (78-70) on Thanksgiving, before bouncing back with a 64-49 victory versus Xavier. The win over the Musketeers was revenge for a loss to the team less than three weeks ago in Cincinnati.
As for the Demon Deacons, their trip to the Bahamas was preceded by a five- game win streak, but that came to an end with the 87-78 setback versus second- ranked Kansas two days ago. On Friday, the squad rebounded with a 77-63 triumph over USC.
In terms of the all-time series between these two programs, the Vols have taken seven of the previous nine meetings, although the last matchup was back in 1970.
Shooting 54.8 percent from the floor in the first half, while holding USC to just 34.5 percent, including 1-of-13 behind the 3-point line, the Demon Deacons built a sizeable advantage which allowed them to cruise to the double- digit win yesterday. Coron Williams came off the bench to score 15 points, followed by Tyler Cavanaugh with 11 and six rebounds. Also scoring in double figures for Wake Forest were Devin Thomas and Madison Jones with 10 points apiece, as the team survived just 5-of-18 shooting from beyond the arc and 12- of-22 at the free-throw line.
Pacing four players in double figures through seven games is Codi Miller- McIntyre with his 17.7 ppg, the guard adding a team-best 32 assists as well. Thomas (12.9 ppg) is averaging a double-double with 10.0 rpg, helping to give the unit a rebounding edge of more than nine per game. Williams (11.6 ppg) and Travis McKie (10.4 ppg) are also critical contributors to an offense producing 83.3 ppg.
Revenge was sweet for the Vols on Friday as they held Xavier to just 49 points in 40 minutes. Tennessee shot just 2-of-14 beyond the arc in the meeting, but thanks to a 12-3 scoring edge at the free-throw line, that ineffectiveness on the perimeter didn't sting as much. Jarnell Stokes led all scorers with 20 points, adding 10 rebounds, while Jordan McRae and Jeronne Maymon pitched in with 16 and 14 points, respectively, with each adding six rebounds as the Volunteers dominated the glass, 41-29.
Prior to the scoring burst by Stokes, now averaging 13.2 ppg, the team had been led in scoring in every game by McRae who is now producing 20.7 ppg. Stokes, who has refrained from attempting even a single 3-point shot, is tops on the glass with 9.5 rpg, followed by Maymon (9.7 ppg) with 8.0 rpg as the team holds the competition to just 29.5 rpg and owns a 10.2 rpg advantage over foes.
As long as Tennessee can take care of the action on the interior, there's no reason to think the Vols can't handle Wake Forest this afternoon.
GAME NOTES: A couple of teams aiming to leave the Bahamas with at least two
victories meet up in the final round of the Battle 4 Atlantis, as the Wake
Forest Demon Deacons clash with the Tennessee Volunteers in the fifth-place
FACTS & STATS: Site: Imperial Arena (3,900) -- Paradise Island, Bahamas.
Television: AXS. Home Record: Wake Forest 5-0, Tennessee 3-0. Away Record:
Wake Forest 0-0, Tennessee 0-1. Neutral Record: Wake Forest 1-1, Tennessee
1-1. Conference Record: Wake Forest 0-0, Tennessee 0-0. Series Record:
Tennessee leads, 7-2.Game Date and Time
Saturday, November 30, 3:30 p.m. (ET)Predicted Outcome
Tennessee 71, Wake Forest 65