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“Every win from here on out is a must-win for us,” Wells said. “We really want to get to the NCAA tournament, and that can’t happen unless we win games.”

The Terps seemed to be in deep trouble after they were whistled for eight fouls in the first 3:47 of the second half. Key players Len, Wells and James Padgett all picked up their third during that stretch — just another in a lengthy list of signs seemingly pointing toward a Wake Forest win.

Maryland entered just 1-6 in ACC road games while the Demon Deacons have quietly re-established Joel Coliseum as a tough place for conference teams to visit.

Wake Forest came in 5-2 in home league games with the two losses — to Georgia Tech and a top-five Duke team — by a combined six points. In the Demon Deacons’ last game here, they handed then-No. 2 Miami its first ACC loss in lopsided fashion, 80-65.

Plus, Wake Forest was honoring Paul — the MVP of the NBA All-Star game and the point guard on the school’s first No. 1 team in 2004-05. A banner bearing Paul’s likeness and jersey No. 3 was unfurled from the rafters at halftime.

And the Terrapins ruined it all.

Maryland outscored Wake Forest 19-9 during the final 9½ minutes of a sloppy first half, then went up 32-24 a few seconds into the second half on a dunk by Wells.

Wake Forest erased that lead by reeling off nine quick points against the suddenly foul-prone Terrapins, with Harris‘ steal and dunk putting the Demon Deacons up 33-32 with 15:08 left.

It stayed tight until Pe’Shon Howard capped a 20-8 run with a free throw with 5:24 left that gave Maryland its first double-figure lead at 59-49.

“No matter what happens, we were going to figure it out,” Turgeon said.