Game Blog: Duke hangs on to down Wake Forest, 28-21
Posted November 22, 2013
Updated November 23, 2013
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Final: Duke 28, Wake Forest 21: Despite a sluggish start, the Duke Blue Devils escaped Winston-Salem Saturday afternoon with a 28-21 win over the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. Anthony Boone led the Duke offense with 256 passing yards and three touchdowns. The Blue Devils, now 9-2 (5-2), can win the ACC's Coastal Division with a victory next week over North Carolina.
3:21, 3rd Quarter, Duke 28, Wake Forest 21: Brandon Connette finishes off a nine-play, 70-yard Duke drive with a 3-yard touchdown run. Anthony Boone led the Blue Devils down the field before handing the offense over to Connette inside the 5 yard line.
3rd Quarter, 9:52, Wake Forest 21, Duke 21: Duke answers quickly with a 58-yard touchdown pass from Anthony Boone to Jamison Crowder. The pass was Boone's 10th straight completion, and the game is tied at 21-21 with 9;52 left in the third quarter.
3rd Quarter, 10:50, Wake Forest 21, Duke 14: The Demon Deacons have regained the lead over Duke after a 75-yard, nine-play scoring drive. Tanner Price capped the march with a 12-yard touchdown run up the middle of the Duke defense.
Halftime: Duke 14, Wake Forest 14: After struggling for much of the first quarter, the Duke Blue Devils found some rhythm in the second quarter against the Demon Deacons and tied the game at 14-14 after falling behind by two scores.
Anthony Boone is 13-of-16 for 102 yards and two touchdowns.
1:11, 2nd Quarter, Wake Forest 14, Duke 14: Back-to-back scoring drives by the Duke Blue Devils have tied the game at 14 in Winston-Salem late in the second quarter.
Anthony Boone found Max McCaffrey from 4 yards out to cap a 10-play, 69-yard drive after a third consecutive Wake Forest three-and-out.Boone is 13-of-16 for 102 yards and two scores.
7:09, 2nd Quarter, Wake Forest 14, Duke 7: After struggling for much of the first half to find any offensive rhythm, the Duke Blue Devils are on the board thanks to a 10-yard pass from Anthony Boone to Jamison Crowder.
Crowder caught the pass in the middle of the field and made several Deacons miss before plunging into the end zone. The drive covered 43 yards in five plays.
14:20, 2nd Quarter, Wake Forest 14, Duke 0: Wake Forest goes up 14-0 after a 6-yard touchdown pass from Tanner Price to Spencer Bishop.
After a poor punt by Duke, the Deacons marched 47 yards in 10 plays for the score. The drive also included a 4th down conversion inside the Duke 10 yard line.
End 1Q: Wake Forest 7, Duke 0: The Demon Deacons are controlling things early in Winston-Salem and lead Duke 7- 0 after the first quarter. Wake Forest scored on a 59-yard fumble return by Thomas Brown, and the Deacons are closing in another touchdown thanks to a short field provided by a poor Duke punt.
5:02, 1st Quarter, Wake Forest 7, Duke 0: Wake Forest leads 7-0 after Thomas Brown picks up a Duke fumble and returns it 59 yards.
15:00, 1st Quarter: Looking to move to 9-2 and maintain control of its destiny in the ACC's Coastal Division, Duke is set for its 12 p.m. (ESPN2) battle with Wake Forest.
Pregame: No. 25 Duke has made a most unlikely climb up the ACC standings, into the national rankings and into the school record book.
But a loss at sputtering Wake Forest on Saturday, and it's all gone.
The Blue Devils (8-2, 4-2) will match a school record with nine wins and clinch at least a share of the Coastal Division title by beating the Demon Deacons (4-6, 2-5) in their first game as a ranked team in nearly two decades.
"It could turn around at any second," defensive tackle Sydney Sarmiento said. "If we lose this week, I'm sure the bandwagon guys out there are going to fall off because they think it's the same old Duke."
The Blue Devils don't want their first appearance in the Top 25 since the 1994 season to be a short one. In winning six straight games - their longest streak since that season - the perennial cellar-dwellers have become the talk of the ACC.
"The players have earned some respect, which they should enjoy," coach David Cutcliffe said. "They know what's out there for them. There's an opportunity that exists, but it's a week-to-week proposition."
If any coach can relate, it's Wake Forest's Jim Grobe.
The Demon Deacons put together a similar worst-to-first season during their Orange Bowl run in 2006. But since the core of that team moved on, they've yet to have a winning season and have reached just one bowl game.
After losing three straight, Wake Forest needs victories over the Blue Devils and at Vanderbilt next week to qualify for the postseason.
"We are disappointed that we haven't played very well the past couple times out," Grobe said. "We know we've got a great challenge. ... I feel like our football team is in a state of mind where we want to play better."
5 things to know about Duke's second straight visit to Wake Forest:
DUKE'S TWO QBs: The Blue Devils have an unusual two-quarterback setup - one takes care of the touchdowns, and the other gets the victories. Anthony Boone has a career record of 8-0 as a starter while change-of-pace Brandon Connette, who also enters in some short-yardage situations, is coming off a five-touchdown performance - four rushing, one passing - in the upset of No. 24 Miami. His 12 rushing TDs rank second in the league and he's thrown for 13 more scores.
CAMP OUT (STILL): When WR Michael Campanaro left Wake Forest's lineup with a broken collarbone, the Demon Deacons' offense went with him. They have yet to score a touchdown since Campanaro was hurt Nov. 2 at Syracuse and have one TD in their last 10 quarters. Cutcliffe says Duke can't worry about how Wake Forest might try to jump-start its offense going because "the emphasis has to be on Duke playing very, very good team defensive football."
ONE-SIDED RIVALRY: The Blue Devils probably won't look past Wake Forest because the Demon Deacons have beaten them so many times. Before Duke's 34-27 win last year, Wake Forest had won the last 12 meetings and Grobe had never lost to the Blue Devils. Plus, the Demon Deacons are in win-or-else mode. "We know how hungry this team is," Duke tight end Braxton Deaver said. "They need two wins to get to a bowl, and that's as hungry as you can possibly be."
DEMON DEACONS' D: Wake Forest's lopsided loss to the Seminoles can't be blamed on the defense because 45 of the 59 points were direct results of the offense's turnovers and a special-teams breakdown. The only teams to score more than 24 points against the Demon Deacons are in the top 10 - Clemson and Florida State - and undersized NT Nikita Whitlock has been tough for opposing offensive lines to control. "He's not easy to deal with, in any form or fashion," Cutcliffe said. "But their other players aren't either."
FEW LATE SCORES: Neither team has been particularly easy to score against in the fourth quarter. For all of its struggles, Wake Forest has given up just 28 points in the final quarter of its games. Duke has been nearly as stingy: Of the 34 points it has allowed in the fourth quarter, there have been two field goals, three offensive touchdowns - only one since Sept. 14 - and an interception returned for a TD.
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