In relatively even match-ups on the hardwood, one can often point to a single statistic that makes a difference in a one-game battle. This pretty much describes NC State’s loss tonight at the RBC Center to the Northwestern Wildcats.
For the night, NC State shot a putrid 2 of 18 for 11% from the three-point line with Javi Gonzalez hitting the Wolfpack’s only two threes (2 of 6)
It doesn’t get any more simple than that.
The Wolfpack missed wide open looks…half contested looks…quick ball reversed looks…you name the look, the Wolfpack missed it.
Additionally, our (expected) weak guard play had a difficult time (1) creating opportunities for the offense against the Wildcat’s extended zone defense and (2) struggled to control Northwestern’s point guard, Michael Thompson who finished the night with 22 points and was able to easily create/convert drives for key buckets in the last five minutes of the game.
Tonight was a night when you could really see where Farnold Degand could help this team. His athleticism, length, quickness and shooting ability are all superior to those of Julius Mays. I love Julius Mays and appreciate his contributions to this team. But that doesn’t make my statement about Degand less true. Who knows the impact Degand could have had on both ends of the court if he was playing.
Again, it really doesn’t get any more simple than this.
The Wolfpack falls to a respectable 5-1 for the season, at least one game better than most fans expected at this point of the season. State has another important out of conference clash on Saturday at 3pm on the road at Marquette. The Golden Eagles are a surprising 6-1 to start the season, losing by one point to Florida State in the finals of the Old Spice Classic on Sunday. (Link)