Second Round NCAA Basketball Coverage: Wake Forest vs. Kentucky

Scott McGrath@smcgrath5Correspondent IMarch 21, 2010

NEW ORLEANS - MARCH 20:  Ishmael Smith #10 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons attempts to dunk the ball ober Darnell Dodson #3 of the Kentucky Wildcats during the second round of the 2010 NCAA men's basketball tournament at the New Orleans Arena on March 20, 2010 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images


This is a live article about the Wake Forest and Kentucky game.

Sure, I may be starting 17 minutes late, but it's okay, there hasn't been much missed. Both teams have come out trying to play extremely offensively.

The Deacons kept up with Kentucky, until Chas McFarland and Al-Farouq Aminu got into foul trouble (questionable calls on at least two of the combined five fouls).

Ish Smith missed a wide open dunk (regrettable), the Wildcats have been great from three and the refs have missed at least one charge, one foul and two travels on Kentucky, while calling nine fouls on Wake Forest.

But, regardless of that, let's get to the live game.

2:00 1st half: Kentucky may have gotten two really good shots to go down (one great dunk by DeMarcus Cousins), the refs apparently forgot what a jump ball is, choosing not to call that and instead grant a delayed call for a time out.

I'm pretty sure at this point the NCAA may have told the refs not to let another high profile team go down so early in the tournament.

0:30 first half: Wake Forest is unable to make anything happen in their final possession, finishing four of eighteen since Aminu went to the bench in foul trouble.

0:04 first half: Very surprised no foul was called on Wake Forest, given the way the refs have been calling this game.

Half time: A disappointing finish to a strong start for Wake Forest, as they finish down 16. Certainly not unable to be overcome, but against a great team like Kentucky (especially since, so far, they have a three—man advantage, if you catch my drift), it will be a tough road for the Demon Deacons.

Darius Miller of Kentucky has been spectacular so far with 16 points, though he was the benefactor of a questionable foul (it was pretty touchy, but hey, I'll give the benefit of the doubt on that play).

DeMarcus Cousins and John Wall have been pretty methodical, combining for 17 points, and Chas McFarland has had a surprising offensive burst, scoring eight points for the Demon Deacons.

In the meantime, CBS has switched to the BYU—Kansas State game. I'll give a little update here (not that it matters, as you could probably just as easily check the box score by the time you read this).

If I told you that at halftime in this game, someone would have twenty points, who would you guess?

Jimmer Fredette? Nope, sorry.

Jacob Pullen has exploded for 20 points, not that this is surprising given his insane offensive ability, but with the ridiculous numbers Fredette has put up recently, finishing the half with only six points is a little disappointing (though he's only missed two shots, so cut him some slack).

But, with half time having arrived to both games, time for a little break from the blog (and just think, I started this with only five minutes to go in the Wake Forest—Kentucky game).

The second half is about to start and let's hope to see a rejuvenated Wake Forest team to make this a game again!

19:37 2nd half: John Wall start the half quickly with a three for Kentucky, but LD Williams responds with a monster jam. Hopefully, the back and forth continues for awhile.

18:50: Very touchy foul called on Ish Smith. Please don't continue (wait, what?).

16:43: Kentucky keeps rolling, with an Eric Bledsoe three, but Wake Forest is playing sloppily.

15:30: And CBS just moved the game to BYU following an alley—oop by Kentucky. Hold on, need to find the online feed.

15:08: Got to "CBS Online," but the game is in a timeout. Wake is down by 27. Not looking good for the Deacs, they will need to turn it around quickly.

12:56: Wake Forrest can't keep up with Kentucky at this point, down 29.

12:20: The announcers finally begin to sing Kentucky's praises, deservedly so with this rout, but still, this gets a little ridiculous for people who are supposed to be "unbiased" (and I will admit that this article is written with some bias towards Wake Forest, though realistically).

9:39: Intentional foul called on Chas McFarland for taking a "swing" at DeMarcus Cousins. At least that's what you'll hear on ESPN.

Cousins pump faked, didn't come up for a lay—up and McFarland swung and got him in the face. It was an intentional given that he hit him in the face, but this is going to be blown out of proportion (probably already is) by the media.

I mean, McFarland was trying to help Cousins up, before Orton ran over and pushed him away (and then got a technical).

The CBS feed just died. Not sure what is going on at this point.

8:30: DeMarcus Cousins just practically tackled CJ Harris to get a steal. No foul called.

As Seth Myers might say: Really?

5:30: Game has devolved into a slower—paced, back—and—forth battle (though given the score differential, not that entertaining), as Kentucky still holds a 27—point lead.

4:34: Calipari begins to send the bench in, as Wake Forest is down 25.

End of second half.

Wake Forest loses by 30 to a fantastic Kentucky team. This isn't exactly a surprising result, though I figured it would be closer. It's a shame that the refs practically took the Deacons out of the first half, but ultimately Wake Forest is to blame for this loss.

Darius Miller and DeMarcus Cousins both had amazing games, finishing with 20 and 19 points respectively. Al-Farouq Aminu finished with 16 points as he was more effective in the second half (and only charged with one foul oddly).

The Wildcats dance on to the Sweet Sixteen and will face the winner of the Wisconsin—Cornell game.

It was an up and down year for Wake Forest, where they crested into the top 25, though often sat around fourth in the ACC. Next year will probably see the same type of streaks happening, as the Demon Deacons enter a rebuilding stage and will have another extremely young lineup.

Prominent players departing the team due to graduation are Ishmael Smith, David Weaver, Chas McFarland, LD Williams and perhaps Al-Farouq Aminu, if he declares for the draft.

Gary Clark will be the only senior on the squad next season who played a role this year, though coach Dino Gaudio will have a solid base to build from for the coming seasons with current sophomores Tony Woods, Ty Walker and Aminu (again conditional on if he remains with the team), as well as freshmen Ari Stewart and CJ Harris.

However, Wake Forest also has one of the best freshman classes in the country joining the program with five top—ranked high school players: J.T. Terrell, Travis McKie, Melvin Tabb, Tony Chennault and Carson Desrosiers.

The future certainly seems very promising for the Demon Deacons, though unfortunately the present is rather glum.

Kentucky played like a one seed tonight and Wake Forest just couldn't keep up. Good luck the rest of the way to this talented Wildcat team and hopefully there will be even more impressive results from Wake Forest basketball next season.


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