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Wake Forest leads at halftime

Wake Forest has caused plenty of matchup problems for No. 4 Purdue, and the Demon Deacons lead 31-29 at halftime at Mackey Arena.

Purdue coach Matt Painter, not surprisingly, opted to go with his regular starting lineup against the super-sized starters of Wake Forest, which has players of 6-foot-9, 6-11 and 7-foot across the front line.

Senior Chris Kramer, who is 6-3, started on 6-9 Al-Farouq Aminu and actually held his own in the post. Aminu made 1 of 4 shots and had four rebounds in the half.

The Boilermakers even hung tough on the boards, being outrebounded by only one.

But maybe more surprising was Purdue's inability to defend Wake point guard Ishmael Smith, who used his quickness to get to the basket whenever he wanted. Purdue senior Keaton Grant couldn't keep Smith from getting to the rim, and neither could Purdue's other option, reserves Mark Wohlford. Smith made 5 of 9 shots and had 10 first-half points.

The Boilermakers should be able to take care of some of their advantages on offense, though.

Wake Forest also had trouble defending off-the-dribble, and junior E'Twaun Moore was particularly aggressive taking the ball to the hole in the half. Not all of Moore's shots were well-advised, but he did score eight points.

Purdue also had several other good looks on jumpers but just couldn't convert. Robbie Hummel made only 2 of 7 shots and missed all four of his three-pointers. The team missed all eight of its threes in the half.

But the Boilermakers have the kind of players who can make those shots -- we'll see if they step up and deliver in the second half.