Wake Forest will need a strong second half in its first-round NCAA tournament game against Cleveland State or the Demon Deacons are going to be going home very early.
Cleveland State leads, 39-30, at the half. The Vikings have led the entire half, starting the game with a 9-0 run in the first two minutes by knocking in three consecutive three-pointers. Wake Forest has looked out-of-sorts the entire first 20 minutes except for forward James Johnson, who has 15 points.
Wake Forest star guard Jeff Teague didn't score for the first 13 minutes and, as in the ACC tournament, too often seemed to look to pass rather than to shoot and/or penetrate.
Cleveland State was up by as much as 17 in the first half (29-12) as the Vikings came out shooting the ball beautifully. Wake Forest carved into that margin late in the first half to get it down to a nine-point deficit.
Still, the No.13 seed Vikings have to be very happy with their first-half performance -- and Wake Forest has to be very unhappy with theirs. The Deacons absolutely must get the ball inside more often to take advantage of their size.