#3 UT Tops Wake Forest, 83-64, Behind Williams’ Double-Double

Credit: UT Athletics

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – In front of a season-high 19,846, Grant Williams recorded his fourth double-double of the season to guide No. 3 Tennessee to an 83-64 win over Wake Forest in Thompson-Boling Arena Saturday afternoon.

Williams finished the night with a game-high 22 points and 10 rebounds, with 17 of his points coming in the first half. It was Williams third 20-point,10-rebound game of the season. The junior added three blocks and has now recorded multiple blocks in five of his last six games.

Admiral SchofieldKyle Alexander and Jordan Bone all joined in the scoring act, as all four finished in double figures. The Vols (10-1) quartet finished the night with 71 points, outscoring the Demon Deacons (6-4) entire team by seven points.

Taking a 12-point advantage into the second half, Tennessee quickly stretched the lead to 17 points, scoring on five of the first six possessions. Schofield provided eight points on 4-of-6 shooting in the first six minutes of the half, while Alexander added six points on 3-of-3 shooting.

Alexander made his first seven baskets of the game and finished the night with a career-high 19 points on 9-of-10 shooting to go along with eight rebounds.

Just six minutes into the second half, Tennessee had extended its lead to 20 points and led by as much as 27 in the contest.

After Wake Forest hit a three on its first possession of the game, Tennessee went on an 8-0 run featuring two buckets from Williams. He continued to provide plenty of offense early on as the junior scored 10 points in his first 10 minutes of the floor.

With 8:20 on the clock in the first half, Williams knocked down a jumper from just inside the elbow and converted on the and-one opportunity to give Tennessee a 22-19 edge. From there, Tennessee led the rest of the way. Williams finished the half with 17 points, knocking down all five of his shots from the free-throw line.

The game remained tight in the first until the ball was kicked out to Jalen Johnson on the right wing. Johnson nailed the three to extend the Vols’ lead to 34-25, forcing a Wake Forest timeout at the 3:20 mark in the half.

The Vols extended their lead to 42-30 at the halftime buzzer, allowing just two made baskets from the Demon Deacons in the final seven minutes of the half.

FAST START:  With win No. 10 today, this is the quickest Tennessee has reached that mark since the 2007-08 season, when the Vols started the year 16-1 and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen in the NCAA Tournament.

STARTING IT OFF: Jordan BoneAdmiral SchofieldGrant Williams and Kyle Alexander all finished in double figures, combining for 71 of Tennessee’s 83 points in the game. Jalen Johnson and Jordan Bowden were the only other Vols to find the scoresheet, as they both finished with six points. With a 53.3 percent shooting performance tonight, Tennessee has now shot 50 percent or better in four of the last five games.

GRANT BLOCKS: Grant Williams ended the night with has three blocks, giving him multiple blocks in five of Tennessee’s last six games. He now ranks among UT’s all-time top 10 shot blockers with 124.

HOLDING THEM IN CHECK: Freshman Jaylen Hoard, the Demon Deacons’ second-leading scorer, was held to less than 10 points for the first time this season. Hoard, who was held him to just seven points on 3-of-9 shooting, was named to the Julius Erving Award watch list and is projected to be a first-round pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. The forward came into the game with five games of 15 points or more. Hoard averages 15.6 points per game and 7.4 rebounds per game.

UP NEXT: The Vols are back in Thompson-Boling on Dec. 29 at 1 p.m. ET when they take on Tennessee Tech. That game will also air on SEC Network+.

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