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Worth the hype
Gwinnett grads, siblings shine in Tech upset of Wake

ATLANTA - The return to town of Wake Forest rookie sensation Al-Farouq Aminu to square off against older brother Alade, former Norcross teammate Gani Lawal and Georgia Tech naturally caused quite a stir throughout the week.

And all three delivered on the build-up by posting double-doubles when the No. 6 Demon Deacons visited the Yellow Jackets on Saturday.

However, it was another freshman, Iman Shumpert, who came up with the game's two biggest shots - a 16-foot jumper to tie the score with 19.6 seconds left and the game-winner on an almost identical jumper 15 seconds later to lift Tech to a 76-74 upset before 8,853 fans at Alexander Memorial Coliseum.

The win not only ended the Jackets' (10-10, 1-6) five-game losing streak, it also gave them their first ACC victory of the season - and more importantly - a much-needed boost of confidence.

"We lost ... a lot of close ones," said Lawal, who led all scorers with 25 points - including hitting 11 of 14 free throws - and pulled down 10 rebounds for his 13th double-double of the season. "(Saturday), we really came out ready to play well against a very talented Wake Forest team."

If Wake (17-2, 4-2) wasn't enough to get Lawal and the Jackets up for Saturday's game, the matchup with him and the Aminu brothers certainly didn't hurt.

All three of the principals were on their game.

Al-Farouq Aminu continued his dominating freshman season by posting team-highs of 17 points, 11 rebounds and five steals.

However, Lawal added two blocked shots to his totals, while Alade Aminu had 10 points and game-highs of 13 rebounds and six blocks off the bench to help Tech get the upper hand,

"I'm going to blow up his (cell) phone (with calls)," the elder Aminu said. "Farouq's going to get it. I tried to shake his hand (after the game). ... He looked mad. But you know it's love.

"We're all brothers. Gani's my little brother. Farouq's my little brother. We're all tight. ... It's like one big family out there."

While the back-and-forth between the Aminu brothers and Lawal was expected, there was also plenty of not-so-friendly banter among the rest of the players in a first half that saw 27 fouls, three technical fouls, an intentional foul and plenty of jawing.

"They're a hard-playing team and so are we," Al-Farouq Aminu said. "Fouls and stuff like that are going to happen, (but) I was expecting to come out with a bruise after this game."

The younger Aminu and Wake built as much as a 30-20 lead after a 3-pointer by L.D. Williams with 9:32 left in the first half.

But older brother Alade and former teammate Lawal helped bring Tech back. The pair controlled the glass for four rebounds, and Lewis Clinch added eight of his 19 points during a 13-4 run that pulled the Jackets back to within 34-33 with 4:42 left in the half.

The Jackets managed to come all the way back and tied the game 41-41 on two Alade Aminu free throws with 1:16 left in the half.

Ishmael Smith's pullup jumper with 8 seconds left wound up putting the Deacons back in front 43-41 heading into intermission, but Tech had plenty of confidence as the second half loomed.

And when Lawal scored two quick buckets after a brief rest on the bench early in the second half, the Jackets had gained their first lead of the game since the opening minutes at 56-55 with 14:24 to play.

The game then went back-and-forth, with five lead changes and a tie before it looked like Wake had seized momentum after Al-Farouq Aminu's layup gave the Deacons a 74-70 lead with 1:58 left.

But Alade Aminu quickly answered with a layup of his own to pull Tech to within 74-72 and set up Shumpert's herocis in the last few frenetic seconds.

Tough Tech defense forced Wake into a shot clock violation with 34 seconds remaining, and with the Deacons sagging down on Lawal and the shorter Teague guarding Shumpert, the Jackets looked to their 6-foot-5 freshman, and he delivered by pulling up to the right of the lane and draining a jumper to even the game 74-74 with 19.6 second to play.

Wake still had time to respond, but after a timeout with 7.4 seconds left, pressure by Lawal forced an errant inbound by Harvey Hale, giving the ball back to the Jackets.

And Shumpert took advantage, driving to almost the exact same spot as his previous basket and drilling another jumper, giving Tech a 76-74 lead with exactly 1 second left.

"I just took what they gave me," said Shumpert, who finished with nine points and three assists.

"I just went back to the top leg and got a good look."

After a timeout, Zachery Peacock then intercepted Wake's last gasp on a length of the floor pass to Al-Farouq Aminu, and Tech had its first win over a ranked opponent since a win over North Carolina on March 1, 2007.