Scuffles, technicals feature in Duke comeback win over Wake Forest

ByCL Brown ESPN logo
Monday, January 30, 2017

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- Dukecompleted a week senior guard Matt Jones labeled as "hell" by weathering technical fouls and a skirmish in front of its bench to defeat Wake Forest85-83.

The Blue Devils trailed the entire second half before a Luke Kennard 3-pointer with 6.6 seconds remaining lifted them to victory.

Jones said after Duke's 84-82 loss to NC State on Monday the team needed to get refocused. Head coach Mike Krzyzewski reportedly helped his players get there by banning them from wearing Duke apparel and kicking them out of their locker room.

"It's been hell," Jones said. "It's been so tough not only physically but mentally. But for the guys to show resiliency and to come out and fight hard like we did, overcome so much to get this win, we took a big step in the right direction."

Duke's Grayson Allen and Wake guard Bryant Crawford were given double technicals in the second half. Allen was called for a block on a Crawford drive and both ended up on the floor.

That set the stage for an Allen foul in front of the Duke bench after missing a 3-pointer. Crawford was the subject of his foul. The two players stood in close proximity, with nothing appearing to escalate, but officials and Duke players closed in to separate the two.

With his teammate surrounded by Blue Devils, Brandon Childress came into the pack and pushed Allen. Childress was given a technical foul for the contact.

"It's always chippy," Allen said. "Y'all guys just got to see it. Anytime you get into a tough game down the stretch between two good teams, it's going to get physical because both teams want to win. I think that's what it was today -- it was just a result of that."

The Wake Forest announcer reminded fans not to throw any items onto the court in the first half and repeated the plea at the beginning and end of the second half.

Allen was booed by the sellout crowd -- Wake Forest's first since the final regular-season game in 2009 -- nearly every time he touched the ball in the first half. The Wake fans also reserved their ire for freshman forward Harry Giles, a Winston-Salem native who was heavily recruited by the Deacons.

"We were ready to go, we were ready to make a change," said Kennard, who led the Blue Devils with 34 points. "Today was the first step to doing that."