Winston-Salem, NC -Travis McKie was ejected at the 11:37 mark after picking up a flagrant two and technical foul for elbowing Scott Wood in the face, but that was inconsequential to the outcome of the game as NC State (13-5, 2-1 ACC) was in control with a 29-point lead on its way to a 76-40 win over Wake Forest (10-7, 1-2 ACC).
"I know this, it [McKie's foul] wasn't intentional," Wake Forest head coach Jeff Bzdelik said. "They're player [Wood] acknowledged that to me. [He] came over and told me that. The referees told me that, but within the concept of the game and the spirit of the rule they had to do what they had to do."
The 6-foot-7 Wake forward from Richmond, Va. left the game with two points (1-5 FG, 0-2 three-point) and four rebounds in 26 minutes of action.
"It's the worst game I've ever played in this Wake Forest uniform, and I have to get better," McKie said. "It was a bad game. We just didn't have it. You've got to give credit where credit's due. NC State played great defense, great help defense, great on-the-ball defense. Me and C.J. [Harris] didn't have it."
McKie's usual scoring counterpart Harris continued his poor ACC play, leading the Demon Deacons with only 10 points (3-12 FG, 0-4 three-point, 4-6 FT).
Wake Forest struggled to get into a flow offensively from start to finish, taking more than three minutes to score its first points and going through multiple long stretches without a basket.
Chase Fischer made a jump-shot with 13:10 left until halftime to trim Wake's deficit to 16-10. The Deacs did not score again till the 6:50 mark when Nikita Mescheriakov scored on a layup that brought Wake Forest within nine.
In the second half the Demon Deacons went scoreless for 7:36 from a Ty Walker dunk to a layup by Carson Desrosiers, as NC State widened its lead to a dominating 54-25 advantage.
The Deacs had more turnovers (17) than made field goals (16) to add insult to injury.
"I think our staff normally does a good job with their scouting, and I think today we really had them pegged," NC State head coach Mark Gottfried said. "Our guys really executed defensively on how we wanted to defend certain things. We've been weak at times with containing really good scorers on the perimeter. Today we did a much better with that."
Wake shot an abysmal 16-55 from the field and 2-20 from three-point land.
Despite being ejected McKie will not be suspended for Wake Forest's next game Thursday, Jan. 19 at Duke, because no punch was thrown and a fight did not occur.