WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — Tomas Woldetensae scored a career-high 21 points and Virginia got a final-play defensive stop to beat Wake Forest 65-63 in overtime on Sunday.
Woldetensae scored all his points on seven 3-pointers, making him the most reliable offensive threat on another tough offensive day for the reigning national champions. That included hitting the go-ahead 3 with 3:55 left in the extra period for the Cavaliers (13-6, 5-4 Atlantic Coast Conference).
Wake Forest had a final possession to tie, calling timeout with the ball with 8.2 seconds left. But the Demon Deacons generated no open space on their push upcourt, prompting Olivier Sarr to try a desperation contested drive only to fail to even get off a tying shot off before the buzzer.
Andrien White scored 21 points to lead the Demon Deacons (9-10, 2-7), including three straight overtime-forcing free throws with 1.7 seconds left. Wake Forest was playing without leading scorer Brandon Childress due to an injury to his lower left leg suffered in practice Thursday, as well as No. 2 scorer Chaundee Brown continuing his extended absence with his own lower-leg injury.
Still, the Demon Deacons overcame a 1-for-15 shooting start to lead 35-28 at the break with a hot close to the first half, then pushed that margin to a dozen early in the second. But they shot just 6 of 27 (22%) in the second half as the Cavaliers climbed back in it.
Virginia: The Cavaliers had lost four of five coming in, including Monday’s loss to North Carolina State in their first home loss to the Wolfpack since 2005. The offense has been a particular problem all year, with the Cavaliers ranked 255th nationally in KenPom’s adjusted offensive efficiency (98.5 points per 100 possessions). Virginia rallied despite making just 9 of 30 shots (30%) after halftime and has yet to score more than 65 points in any game.
Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons are a middle-of-the-pack offense in the ACC according to KenPom, but things got notably tougher with Childress (15.2 points) wearing a protective boot on his left leg. Meanwhile, Brown (13.3) missed his sixth straight game. White turned in a big scoring day and hit 10 of 11 free throws to go with three 3-pointers, but the Demon Deacons didn’t have enough reliable scoring options to close this one out.
Virginia: The Cavaliers host No. 5 Florida State on Tuesday.
Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons visit Notre Dame on Wednesday.