Hokies deal No. 1 Deacons first loss

Published 4:42 am Thursday, January 22, 2009

Virginia Tech made sure there are no unbeaten teams left in Division I.

Malcolm Delaney scored 21 points and the Hokies held on to upset No. 1 Wake Forest 78-71 on Wednesday night.

A.D. Vassallo and Jeff Allen added 16 points apiece for the Hokies (12-6, 3-1 Atlantic Coast Conference). They led nearly from the opening tip to the final buzzer, pushed their lead to 16 and made it stand up for their first victory over a No. 1 team since they beat North Carolina two seasons ago in Blacksburg.

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Jeff Teague scored 23 points and James Johnson added 18 before fouling out with 1:17 remaining for Wake Forest (16-1, 3-1), playing as the nation’s top-ranked team for the first time since November 2004 when Chris Paul was running the show.

The Demon Deacons cut it to two twice in the final 4 minutes — the last coming when Teague’s 3-pointer with 1:49 remaining made it 71-69. But Delaney hit two free throws 7 seconds later and the Hokies allowed one field goal after that to clinch one of the biggest victories in school history.

Virginia Tech improved to 3-6 against top-ranked teams — and continued its dominance of the Demon Deacons. The Hokies have won five of their last six meetings with Wake Forest.

No. 3 Connecticut 89, No. 20 Villanova 83

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A.J. Price scored a career-high 29 points to lead Connecticut over Villanova for its sixth straight victory.

Jerome Dyson added 19 points and Jeff Adrien had 12 points and 14 rebounds, his fourth double-double in as many games, for the Huskies (17-1, 6-1 Big East), who improved to 5-1 this season against ranked teams, with the only loss coming at home to Georgetown.

Dwayne Anderson had 15 points for the Wildcats (14-4, 2-3), who have dropped three of five, with all the losses to fellow ranked teams in the Big East.

The matchup of teams ranked in the league’s top five in defense looked nothing like that as the first half ended tied at 48. The defense picked up on both sides in the second half, although both teams allowed more than 20 points over their season average.

No. 5 North Carolina 94, No. 10 Clemson 70

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Wayne Ellington had 25 points to help North Carolina beat Clemson, keeping the Tar Heels perfect in 54 home games against the Tigers.

Tyler Hansbrough added 20 points for the Tar Heels (17-2, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference), whose 54-0 run against the Tigers here is an NCAA record for the longest home winning streak against one opponent. North Carolina took control late in the first half and used a 24-4 run spanning the break to build an 18-point lead early in the second half.

Clemson (16-2, 2-2) never got closer than 13 the rest of the way and trailed by as many as 27 points. It was the Tigers’ second consecutive defeat after a 16-0 start, following Saturday’s home loss to Wake Forest.

Ellington, a Clemson nemesis last season, finished 9-for-15 from the field to go with a career-high seven assists and six rebounds. Ty Lawson added 16 points and seven assists for North Carolina.

Terrence Oglesby scored 17 of his 22 points in the first half for Clemson.

No. 6 Oklahoma 72, Nebraska 61

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Blake Griffin had 27 points and 18 rebounds for his 15th double-double, and Oklahoma slugged out a victory over Nebraska to become the first team in the nation with 18 wins.

Griffin broke a Big 12 record with his eighth game of at least 20 points and 15 rebounds, surpassing the previous mark set by Kevin Durant of Texas and Michael Beasley of Kansas State.

The Sooners (18-1, 4-0 Big 12) needed every bit of his production to get past a disciplined Nebraska (12-5, 2-2) team that kept it close by getting Oklahoma to settle for 3-pointers much of the night.