Jesse Edwards tied his career with 27 points and collected a career-best 20 rebounds as host Syracuse snapped a four-game losing streak by defeating Wake Forest 72-63 on Saturday in the regular-season finale for both teams.
The Orange (17-14, 10-10 ACC) finished as the No. 8 seed in the ACC standings and once again will face the ninth-seeded Demon Deacons (18-13, 10-10) in the first round of the conference tournament on Wednesday.
Edwards shot 11 of 15 from the field in this one and also contributed five steals and two blocks. Judah Mintz chipped in 17 points for Syracuse, while Joe Girard added 16 points.
Tyree Appleby led Wake Forest with 21 points, eight assists and three steals and Daivien Williamson pitched in 11 points. The Demon Deacons have lost four of their last five games.
Syracuse was clinging to a 15-14 lead midway through the first half before the hosts unleashed a 10-0 run to create some breathing room. Edwards and Maliq Brown each had a dunk during the surge.
Wake Forest got within 32-29 with about three minutes left in the half, but the Orange scored the final seven points to go into the locker room with a 10-point advantage. Mintz had four points during that late push and led all players with 13 points in the first half.
The Demon Deacons needed about four minutes of second-half action to get the margin down to 41-38, but Chris Bell’s dunk ignited an 11-2 push by the Orange. Edwards threw down a dunk early in the run and then capped the uprising with a layup with 13:18 left, making it 52-40.
Syracuse led by as many as 16 on Edwards’ layup with 9:26 to go, but Wake Forest made things a bit interesting down the stretch.
Appleby drained two 3-pointers and Williamson added one of his own to draw the visitors within 64-53. Then back-to-back buckets by Zach Keller and Cameron Hildreth made it a seven-point game with 48 seconds left.
Mintz iced the game with two free throws with 44 ticks remaining.
–Field Level Media