WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP)
Chaundee Brown scored 26 points, Brandon Childress added 22 and Wake Forest beat No. 23 Xavier 80-78 on Saturday in the Musketeers’ first game this season on an opponent’s home court.
Xavier (9-2), which trailed the entire second half, had a chance to win in the final seconds, but Quentin Goodin’s 3-point attempt bounced off the rim as time expired.
Wake Forest (6-5) led by 13 points in the second half. But Childress missed the first of two free-throws attempts to give the Musketeers a final shot for a win.
Wake Forest won despite playing without 7-footer Olivier Sarr, who averaged 15 points and 10.9 rebounds off the bench in the previous seven games. Sarr is in concussion protocol after suffering a blow to the head in the Deacons’ Dec. 7 game against N.C. State.
Paul Scruggs scored 30 points for Xavier. Naji Marshall added 16 before fouling out with 3:45 remaining.
The Deacons never trailed after Ody Oguama’s basket put the ahead with 3:57 left in the first half, triggering a 14-4 run that gave Wake Forest a 39-30 halftime lead.
Xavier: The Musketeers failed their first road test of the season, but almost pulled out a victory in a game in which they trailed for all but a few minutes.
Wake Forest: The Deacons picked up some needed momentum after losing their previous three, winning without Sarr. They have a week to recover before playing region rival North Carolina A&T.
Xavier: Host Western Carolina on Wednesday night.
Wake Forest: Host N.C. A&T next Saturday.