WINSTON-SALEM — After a productive first half in which it amassed 271 yards, the Wake Forest offense struggled through much of the second half. Four of the Demon Deacons first five drives in the second half ended with punts. The other ended with an interception.
Then came the 11-play, 93-yard drive that ended with Tanner Prices 1-yard touchdown run with about two minutes to play. The touchdown helped give Wake a 28-27 victory on Saturday at BB&T Field.
Despite the lack of success in the second half to that point, Price, who threw for a career-high 327 yards, exuded confidence to his teammates entering that drive, which began on the Wake 7-yard line with 6:36 to play.
Tanner looked at us and we believe in him as our quarterback, junior receiver Michael Campanaro said. And he told us that he was going to drive down there 90-something yards, John Elway-esque a little.
Thats exactly what Price did, with the help of a 15-yard facemask penalty that UNC committed on a 2nd-and-4. That gave the Deacons a first down on their own 31.
After moving ahead 11 yards, Price completed a 31-yard pass to Sherman Ragland, whose reception gave the Deacons a first down on the UNC 27. From there, Price completed a 15-yard pass to Campanaro, who dragged defenders to the Tar Heels 12-yard line.
During the drive, UNC had trouble generating any kind of pressure on Price, who had plenty of time to throw.
They max protected us inside a lot, and it was hard, trying to beat double teams, said UNC defensive tackle Sylvester Williams. They had a plan, and they executed the plan very well. And that was to keep us off the quarterback, and they did a great job of that tonight.
Especially on that game-changing drive.
Wake coach Jim Grobe said he was, proud, of the number of his players who made important plays that eventually allowed the Deacons to score the go-ahead points.
Guys made plays, said Campanaro, who caught 13 passes for 164 yards. And we were just happy to put it in the end zone.