CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) It was turkey time at the Charleston Classic for Wake Forest ??? and not just because it's November.
Demon Deacons coach Danny Manning said assistant coach Randolph Childress challenged their players to get three defensive stops in a row. "We called it a turkey," Manning said.
Wake Forest picked up several turkeys Sunday night in a 78-61 victory over College of Charleston to finish third in the eight-team tournament.
Manning said he wanted his players focused on defense and Childress found a catchy way to do that. "We had three turkeys in the first half," Manning said. "Not sure how many we had in the second half, but the guys kind of rallied around that. I think we're going to try and use that all year long."
Especially if it leads to more defensive efforts like Wake Forest (4-1) had in beating the Cougars (3-2).
The Deacons held Charleston to 33.3 percent shooting overall and 27.8 percent on threes. They had five blocks and out-rebounded their opponents 36-30 in finishing 2-1 at TD Arena.
The Demon Deacons took control against the home-standing Cougars with a 15-6 run over the final six minutes of the opening half. They kept the pressure up after the break as Crawford had a 3-pointer and a three-point play to build a 62-42 lead midway through the period.
College of Charleston (3-2) sliced that margin in half with 10 straight points, but could get no closer to lose for a second straight game.
"The shots were just falling," Crawford said. "Coach gets on me a lot about missing layups, but today I made them."
Crawford ended 7 of 12 from the field and had two of Wake's eight 3-pointers.
Joe Chealey led Charleston with 19 points.
Wake Forest closed an up-and-down event on a high note. It opened by hitting the 100-point mark for the first time eight years with a 103-81 victory over UTEP, then fell 96-77 to No. 3 Villanova despite shooting 50 percent from the field.
This time, the Deacons mostly clicked throughout against the pesky Cougars. They finished over 50 percent (28 of 54) from the field, the fourth time in five games with such a high percentage.
Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons have a large group of athletic young players like sophomores Bryant Crawford, Keyshawn Woods and John Collins and freshman
College of Charleston: The Cougars have to find their scoring touch if they hope to make a run in the Colonial Athletic Association this winter. Charleston shot less than 29 percent in a loss to UCF on Friday night and was struggling to make shots once more against Wake Forest.
LOTS OF DEACONS
Wake Forest coach Danny Manning used 11 players, in part because of early foul trouble for starters Dinos Mitoglou and John Collins. Still, the team got solid showings from players not typically in the rotation. "I really like our balance," Manning said. "For us to get a win with John only playing 14 minutes and Dinos only 17, I think that speaks volumes to the balance we have on our team.
College of Charleston struggled with its shooting throughout the tournament, something the Cougars know must improve in a hurry. "It's early," Charleston guard Joe Chealey said. "It's only the first five games of the season. We've got to trust the process."
Wake Forest returns home to play Coastal Carolina on Wednesday night.
College of Charleston travels to No. 3 Villanova on Wednesday night.
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