NC STATE BASKETBALL
Joe Giglio (N&O)
Warren’s 22 carries N.C. State to 72-55 win over Penn State
Last season, N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried might have kept Howell in the game, after he picked up his second foul at 17:04 in the first half, or brought him back in before the end of the half, but Howell remained on the bench and the Wolfpack was fine.
“When Rich does foul, somebody has to help the team, luckily that was me,” said Warren, who added a team-best eight rebounds.
Gottfried noticed the difference between his team’s play without Howell, compared to last season.
“I was never forced to put Richard back in there, that was nice,” Gottfried said.
“They’ve got a lot of guys,” Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said. “They’re the No. 6 in the country for a reason.”
And for the second straight game, N.C. State turned up its defensive pressure. Penn State guard Tim Frazier finished with a game-high 23 points but he didn’t score in the first 13 minutes of the game and he needed 20 field goal attempts to get there.
N.C. State held the Nittany Lions to 3 of 19 from 3-point range and 16 of 41, Frazier and guard Jermaine Marshall were a combined 2 of 12.
“Defensively, at times, we were very good,” Gottfried said. “And I think at times we’re just a little bit disinterested. We’ve got to maintain our defensive intensity.”
Joe Giglio (N&O)
Pack’s Leslie dominates in second half
Penn State trailed by seven points before Leslie got rolling. The Nittany Lions were down by 17 when Leslie was done.
“When we needed him to score, he scored,” N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried said.
And Penn State coach Patrick Chambers didn’t mince any words about the ACC preseason player of the year.
“He killed us,” Chambers said.
In the first two games of the season, Leslie has dominated in stretches — in the opening minutes of the 97-59 win over Miami (Ohio) last Friday and at the start of the second half on Thursday.
Leslie has been strong with huge scoring numbers or, for that matter, a lot of shots. Leslie has only taken 13 shots in the first two games of the season.
“He could score a lot more points for this team but he’s such an unselfish guy,” Gottfried said.
Leslie finished the game with four rebounds, two assists and a steal. His assists numbers are up through two games, he has five in two games after he had 37 in 34 games last season.
“I know I can score but if I see somebody open, I’m going to get them the ball,” Leslie said.
Joe Giglio (N&O)
Wolfpack freshmen look for another big game
Tyler Lewis and T.J. Warren have known each other since middle school, and in their first college basketball game, they looked like they had been teammates just as long. But N.C. State’s game against Penn State on Thursday in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off will only be the second official game together for the freshmen friends.
“The only other game we were on the same team was the McDonald’s (All-American) Game,” Lewis said, “and that doesn’t really count.”
Lewis, a point guard from Statesville, and Warren, a forward from Durham, thrived off the bench in the Wolfpack’s season opener, a 97-59 home win over Miami (Ohio) last Friday. Lewis had six points and six assists in 15 minutes and Warren had eight points and two assists in 24 minutes. Fellow freshman Rodney Purvis started at guard and tied senior Richard Howell for the team lead in scoring with 16 points.
If last season’s rotation is any indication, Wolfpack coach Mark Gottfried will rely on Lewis and Warren as his primary reserves, although Gottfried considers Warren his “sixth starter.”
“I’ve told both (Purvis and Warren), we’ve got six starters, I’m just not allowed to start six,” Gottfried said after the Miami game.
T.J. Warren had 22 points and eight rebounds to lead No. 6 North Carolina State to a 72-55 win over Penn State in the opening round of the Puerto Rico Tipoff on Thursday.
C.J. Leslie had 14 points and Rodney Purvis added 12 points for the Wolfpack (2-0). Purvis was 3 for 3 on 3-pointers and N.C. State shot 8 for 16 from beyond the arc.
“It was a good, physical game,” N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried said. “It’s good for us to play a strong, physical team that will challenge us around the basket and Penn State did that. Defensively, at times, we were very good. And, at times, we were disinterested defensively.”
Jacey Zembal (TheWolfpacker.com)
Mark Gottfried impressed with unselfishness, balance
How was it surviving the first half with senior center Richard Howell only playing three minutes due to foul trouble?
“It’s kind of that same story again. That first foul, he picked it up 75 feet away from the basket. Those things just come back to haunt him last year. We just have to figure out a way for him to not do that. I don’t know what the answer is right now, but that’s going to be an issue. We were able to survive it.
“I thought both the freshmen, T.J. [Warren] and Rodney [Purvis] gave us some scoring in the first half that we needed. We are sitting there at halftime, and I think it was a seven-point lead, but Scott [Wood], Richard and Lorenzo [Brown] had combined for two points. We are still up seven. That’s a good sign for our team that somebody else can pick that up for us.
“Defensively, we were pretty good at times, really good at times I thought. Then we still get disinterested at moments. We have to get more consistent there.”
How was Brown’s defense on Tim Frazier of Penn State, who finished with 23 points?
“I thought Lorenzo did a very good job defensively. I thought offensively, he was just in a hurry sometimes. He tried to create some plays that he didn’t need to try and create. He got himself into trouble and into traffic. Defensively, he was pretty good.
“For short amount of times, I thought Tyler [Lewis] did a nice job on him. Tyler didn’t back down and he got through the screens. They set a lot of screens for him. He’s a hard player to guard because he always has the ball, Frazier does, and they are always running the ball screen for him. I thought both those two guys, and Rodney had him for a few trips here and there, but he to work and he had to earn it. He took 20 shots and he got some of those at the foul line late.”
How physical was Penn State in contesting things?
“They are going to win some games in the Big Ten, but when we say they are physical, really what is happening a lot of times around the rim, you are going up for a two or three-footer, and there is a lot of contact and a lot of bumping. A lot of those you want fouls or to call a foul. We have to be able to play through that too. We have to play through that physical contact.
“I thought at times, even in the first half, we didn’t. We are around the rim trying to lay the ball in. We have to take it in a little bit stronger and concentrate a little harder. Sometimes, we need to take it two hands to the rim, and if they foul, they foul, but dunk that thing. We have to get a little bit better of fighting through that contact. Penn State was pretty physical, so that was good for us to see that in this first game here.”
BOX SCORE: NC State 72, Penn State 55
Akula Wolf (backingthepack.com)
Strong Second Half Propels Pack To 72-55 Win Over Penn State
So that did not begin in what we might consider ideal fashion–Richard Howell had two fouls and was out of the game within a few minutes, Brown and Leslie were sloppy, and Scott Wood was totally contained. But despite this unexpected combination of regrettable circumstances, NC State was never in much jeopardy, and we have Rodney Purvis and T.J. Warren to thank for that.
After a sluggish start, Purvis was there to inject some offense into the proceedings and even the score, and Warren was able to help the Pack build a lead. Without their efforts, NC State would not have been up nine points at halftime, and honestly, the Pack probably didn’t deserve to have that kind of a lead.
Fortunately, Penn State was an offensive train wreck, as advertised. They took advantage of Howell’s absence in the first half by out-hustling NC State and picking up more offensive boards than they might otherwise have expected, but once Howell was able to actually play for an extended period of time, their offense died, and for obvious reasons. ,,,
Eric Gibson (blackshoediaries.com)
Game 2: NC State Recap
The Wolfpack proved worth the hype and ran away with a 72-55 victory over the Nittany Lions.
NC State came in as the favorite to win the Atlantic Coast conference behind their preseason player of the year, CJ Leslie. They added a stud freshmen class to complement Leslie, a big time point guard in Lorenzo Brown, and ‘the best shooter in the building’ Scott Wood. Turns out, everything we’ve been hearing about the Pack was pretty much the truth. They’re good.
Penn State simply was not anywhere near ready to compete with a team of this caliber. The offense continues to struggle with no reliable option, not even with Frazier who continues to be uncomfortable when taking on the scoring burden himself. He finished with 23 points, but it took 20 FGA and 11 FTA to get there. The flow on offense was non-existant as once again the posts were ignored. The Lions only assisted on 4 of their 19 total baskets in the contest. It was another brick-fest at PSU’s end as they missed 41 of their 60 FGAs and shot 34% eFG%. In two games, PSU has made 6 of their 43 three-point attempts (a lovely 14%).
Penn State was also overmatched on the defensive end, where NC State’s athleticism and shooting ability could not be stopped. The Pack didn’t even play particularly well, but PSU’s need for help defense on Brown and other drivers opened up the perimeter for TJ Warren (22 points), Rodney Purvis, and Scott Wood (combined 8-11 from three). Leslie had a quiet game for most the day, but blew up the start of the second half with 7 points in the first 5 minutes, extending a nine-point NCSU lead to seventeen. It ballooned to 26 before PSU fought back in the last five minutes to end it at 72-55.
North Carolina State is the only ranked team in this eight-team tournament, but it’s lost all three meetings with UMass (2-0). However, the most recent matchup came on January 1, 2003.
The Minutemen have already proven their ability to win close games, taking their first two by a combined five points.
Terrell Vinson tipped the ball into the basket as time expired to give UMass a 77-75 win over Providence in the opening round of this tournament Thursday. That came two days after Sampson Carter hit a 3 in the final seconds to secure a season-opening 67-64 win over Harvard.
“I just don’t want this to become a habit — where you let a lead get away and have to win at the end,” coach Derek Kellogg said.
Jesse Morgan has been the team’s top offensive threat, scoring 18 points against the Friars after he had 19 in the opener. He averaged 9.9 points as a sophomore last season.
Fellow guard Chaz Williams — the team leader with 16.9 points per game last season — scored 17 on 7 of 13 from the field Thursday.
The winner of this game will play either Oklahoma State or Tennessee for the tournament title on Sunday, with the losing teams meeting in the consolation game earlier in the day.
MATT VAUTOUR (gazettenet.com)
UMass, No. 6 NC State to meet in Puerto Rico Tip-Off semifinals
The matchup that the University of Massachusetts men’s basketball program was craving from the moment the Puerto Rico Tip-Off field was announced is happening tonight at Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez.
The Minutemen will face No. 6-ranked North Carolina State at 5 p.m. (ESPN2) in the semifinal round.
The Wolfpack did little to dampen the enthusiasm around them as they blew out Penn State 72-55 Thursday. UMass held off Providence 77-75 at the buzzer.
NC State freshman T.J. Warren had a breakout game with 22 points and eight rebounds to lead the Wolfpack (2-0).
The winner will advance to the championship Sunday at 6:30 p.m. Tennessee and Oklahoma State play at 10:30 a.m. Friday in the other semifinal.
The losers will play at 4 p.m. in the third-place game.
NC State coach Mark Gottfried hadn’t watched Providence tape but had seen the Minutemen.
“I like UMass’ team. They’re really athletic,” said Gottfried before UMass took the floor. “If it’s UMass, it’s full-court press. It’s up-and-down. It’s that type of a game. I like their team. I really like their point guard. He makes a lot happen.”
The Minutemen won all three previous meetings against NC State — once in Amherst, Raleigh, N.C., and Honolulu.
MATT VAUTOUR (gazettenet.com)
UMass beats Providence on Terrell Vinson tip-in at buzzer
Terrell Vinson never saw his final shot go in.
The University of Massachusetts senior forward was knocked to the floor after tapping the rebound off Chaz Williams’ missed shot back toward the net.
But when he saw the bench, led by staff assistant Lou Roe, racing toward him joyously, he knew he’d given the Minutemen their second straight buzzer-beating win, 77-75 over Providence at Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
The game appeared headed for overtime when Williams’ driving layup attempt rolled off the rim, but Vinson crashed from the left baseline and tipped the ball back in as time ran out.
“It was another heart-pounding victory,” UMass coach Derek Kellogg said. “I’m not sure who deserved to win. … That we were able to come away with a victory is a testament to the type of kids we have. We’re ecstatic. Two buzzers-beaters in a week is probably a little much for a coach. When it works out that way there’s nothing more fulfilling and gratifying than winning a game the way we won it.”
Williams saw divine intervention.
“We are really happy with the victory but not happy with our performance,” said Williams, who had 17 points, seven rebounds, five assists and six turnovers. “Fortunately, God blessed us and the shot went in. … Actually it looked like God gave it a little push.”
Shawn Krest (CBSSports.com)
ACC Recruiting: Early signing period report, Part 1
Indiana wins second battle with North Carolina: Noah Vonleh became the second recruit in a month to choose Indiana over North Carolina. F Troy Williams (6-7, 190) of Oak Hill committed to the Hoosiers at the end of October, and top-10 rated prospect Noah Vonleh (6-9, 220) of Hampton (NH) prep also turned down Roy Williams and the Heels in favor of Indiana last weekend. Signing day: PG Nate Britt (6-1, 165, Oak Hill) and PF Isaiah Hicks (6-8, 210, Oxford, NC) both reportedly signed their letters of intent on Wednesday.
Anya expected to sign with NC State on Friday: C Beejay Anya (6-9, 260, Dematha) will announce his college decision on Friday. He’s expected to sign with NC State. Signing day: PF Kyle Washington (6-9, 215, Wolfeboro, NH) sent his letter of intent on the first day of the signing period. The Wolfpack has a commitment from PG Anthony Barber (6-2, 165, Hampton, VA), but as of the end of the day Wednesday, the school hadn’t issued confirmation that the letter had been received.
Duke in good shape with Parker, but no decision in fall: SF Jabari Parker (6-7, 200, Simeon, Chicago) was impressed by his visit to Duke at the end of October, but he doesn’t plan to sign a letter of intent during the November signing period. Signing day: SG Matt Jones (6-4, 180, Desoto, TX) signed his letter of intent. SF Semi Ojeleye (6-6, 220, Ottawa, KS) has committed and will reportedly sign next week. He visited Duke for the season opener against Georgia State.
NC STATE VOLLEYBALL
Virginia (9-19, 3-13) at NC State (20-8, 10-7)
Friday | 7 p.m. | Reynolds Coliseum
Series record: Virginia leads, 36-22
Last meeting: NC State won 3-1 on Oct. 13 in Charlottesville, Va.
Virginia Tech (15-12, 8-9) at NC State (20-8, 10-7)
Saturday | 5 p.m. | Reynolds Coliseum
Series record: Virginia Tech leads, 17-9
Last meeting: NC State won 3-1 on Oct. 12 in Blacksburg, Va.
NC State’s 2012 Results
Overall: 20-8; Home: 14-3; Away: 4-5; Neutral: 2-0.
Atlantic Coast Conference: 10-7; Home 7-2; Away: 3-5.
Heading into the final week of the 2012 schedule, the preseason dreams of NC State’s record-setting volleyball squad are still alive.
The Wolfpack (20-8 overall, 10-7 ACC) has already set a school record for ACC wins, guaranteed itself an overall winning record for the second year in a row and assured a non-losing conference mark for the first time since 1990.
Third-year coach Bryan Bunn admits, however, that there is still work to be done if the Pack wants to reach its primary objective for the season: earning a bid into the 64-team NCAA Championship when they are announced on Nov. 25. NC State has made only one trip to the tournament in the 38-year history of the volleyball program, losing 3-0 to host Kentucky in the first round of the 1987 tournament in Lexington, Ky.
“We’re squarely on the bubble for the NCAA field,” Bunn said. “So this is a huge weekend for us. We need to win at least two of our final three matches. So if we can take care of business this weekend, that will put us in good position.”
Also at stake for the Wolfpack is an upper-division finish in the ACC standings. Last year’s team tied for seventh in the ACC standings, matching the program’s highest finish since the 1995 squad placed fifth in the eight-team league.
The Pack hasn’t finished in the top half of the league standings since the 1991 team finished tied for fourth in the eight-team ACC with a 3-4 ACC record.
“It’s a big weekend for us,” Bunn said. “Basically, fourth through sixth place will be determined this weekend. So we are excited to have the opportunity to be at home, to have those teams come here.
“It should be a good weekend.”
The Wolfpack has beaten all three teams remaining on its schedule, topping Virginia Tech and Virginia in 3-1 road victories and handing North Carolina a 3-1 loss in its ACC opener. Bunn said both teams his squad will face this weekend will offer challenges.
The first 200 spectators at Saturday’s match against the Cavaliers will receive the third and final set of 2012 NC State volleyball trading cards. This week’s set includes seniors Megan Cyr and Alexa Micek; juniors Brie Merriwether, Meredith Richardson and Katie Ganny; and sophomores…
The Wolfpack will conclude its regular-season schedule when it travels to North Carolina on Wednesday to face the third-place Tar Heels at Carmichael Arena in a 2 p.m. contest. The Wolfpack defeated the Tar Heels 3-1 on Sept. 14 at Reynolds Coliseum in its ACC opener.