NC State holds off Georgia Tech, 70-57
Posted March 3, 2013
Atlanta — FINAL: NC State 70, Georgia Tech 57
NC State led big early but had to battle to hang on and defeat Georgia Tech, 70-57, Sunday in Atlanta.
The win pulls the Wolfpack into a tie for the four-spot in the ACC conference with Virginia with two regular season games remaining.
Richard Howell finished the game with 18 points and six rebounds. TJ Warren and Calvin Leslie each finished with double figures as well.
NC State made more free throws (21) than Georgia Tech attempted (12).
The Yellow Jackets also turned the ball over 15 times and shot just 35 percent from the floor.
3:49 2nd: NC State 58, GT 51
NC State's lead has grown back to seven points at the final media timeout as their once double-digit lead had slimmed down, but was never relinquished.
Richard Howell continues to lead all scorers with 18 points and three Wolfpack starters are in double figures.
7:04 2nd: NC State 51, GT 47
Rebounds, turnovers, fouls and shooting percentage are all very similar between NC State and Georgia Tech as the game moves to the latter stages. So too is the score as the Wolfpack hold a four-point edge.
11:22 2nd: NC State 45, GT 41
NC State has struggled from the field since getting off to a hot start in the opening minutes and they lead by just four midway through the second half.
Scott Wood hit his first field goal with 12 minutes to play and responded with an air ball. Calvin Leslie also has an air ball to his credit tonight. The Wolfpack ate 0-for-8 from three-point range.
NC State is still shooting 42 percent from the floor in large part to Richard Howell's start. Turnovers are now 15-8 with the Jackets being more giving.
15:41 2nd: NC State 41, GT 37
After scoring just one point in the first half, Calvin Leslie scored the first six for NC State out of the break and the Wolfpack lead by four at the first break of the second half.
HALFTIME: NC State 36, GT 33
Despite leading by as many at 14 points at one point in the first half, NC State takes just a three point edge into half at Georgia Tech.
Richard Howell goes to half with 18 points, four rebounds and three steals on his stat sheet. TJ Warren has 10 points.
Georgia Tech, despite turning the ball over 10 times, went on a 19-8 run to close the half.
3:56 1st: NC State 30, GT 23
Georgia Tech is on a 9-2 run to cut the NC State lead to seven points, but the Pack will be at the line coming out of the final media timeout of the first half.
Howell will go to the line after the break looking to add to his 16 points. he also has four rebounds and three steals.
7:19 1st: NC State 28, GT 14
Richard Howell has 16 points in the first eight minutes of play, Georgia Tech has just 14 as a team, and the Wolfpack are doubled-up on the Jackets late in the first half.
Georgia Tech has nine turnovers in 12 minutes and Calvin Leslie has seen off-the-bench appreciation for his hustle from Mark Gottfried.
10:55 1st: NC State 20, GT 10
Richard Howell has 12 points and three rebounds already and Georgia Tech has not hit a field goal in over four minutes as the Wolfpack lead 20-10 at the under-12 timeout.
TJ Warren also has four points and NC State has 10 points off four Georgia Tech turnovers.
14:46 1st: GT 10, NC State 8
Richard Howell has provided the offense for NC State early with six of the first eight points, but Georgia Tech is out to the early 10-8 lead.
Robert Carter has four points and Kammeon Holsey has added four off the bench for the Jackets.
20:00 1st: NC State at Georgia Tech
NC State will trot out Scott Wood, Lorenzo Brown, CJ Leslie, TJ Warren and Richard Howell as the Wolfpack can again reclaim the No. 4 spot in the ACC following a Virginia loss Sunday.
The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets will close out action at McCamish Pavilion for the season on Sunday night when they play host to the NC State Wolfpack in an Atlantic Coast Conference bout.
NC State (20-8) began the season as one of the favorites in the ACC, but with just three games remaining in the regular season it sits alone in fifth place at 9-6. After suffering a defeat at North Carolina on Feb. 23, the Wolfpack bounced back on Wednesday night with an 82-64 victory over Boston College for their fourth win in the past five games.
Meanwhile, Georgia Tech has suffered a disappointing fate in the ACC (5-10) despite its solid overall showing (15-12). The Yellow Jackets snapped a two- game losing streak on Wednesday with a 78-68 win over Maryland to improve their home record to 11-5.
NC State holds a 53-37 lead over Georgia Tech in the all-time series. The Wolfpack have won three of the last four meetings, including 83-70 in Raleigh on Jan. 9.
The Wolfpack ran out to a 22-6 in less than 12 minutes into their latest game and they went on to cruise to the 18-point victory from there. They shot nearly 56 percent from the field and had five players score in double figures, led by Rodney Purvis, who shot 8-of-11 from the floor for 21 points off the bench. Scott Wood drained 5-of-10 from 3-point range for 17 points, Lorenzo Brown tallied 11 points and six assists, while T.J. Warren (13 points, eight rebounds), C.J. Leslie (10 points, nine rebounds, three blocks) and Richard Howell (10 rebounds, two blocks) were all strong in the trenches. NC State has grown accustomed to fantastic all-around efforts on offense, as all five starters average at least 12.1 ppg. Leslie (15.2 ppg) and Howell (12.8 ppg) both shoot greater than 53 percent from the field, while Howell's 11.0 rpg rank tops in the ACC and fourth nationally. Brown (12.6 ppg) leads the league in assists with seven per outing, and Wood (12.4 ppg) is one of the country's top perimeter threats, having connected on 82-of-185 from 3-point range (.443). Warren rounds out the dangerous starting five with 12.1 ppg, and Purvis (9.0 ppg) is strong in his reserve role. While NC State is the ACC's second-highest scoring team (78.3 ppg), it has avoided elite status due to its porous defense (71.0 ppg).
Georgia Tech carried a five-point lead into halftime its last time out against Maryland and never surrendered that advantage. Not only did it shoot a lofty 51 percent from the field, but it also took care of business at the foul line, outscoring the Terps at the stripe, 20-10. Robert Carter, Jr. was the catalyst in the victory with 19 points and 10 boards, while Daniel Miller tallied 16 points, nine rebounds and three blocks, shooting a perfect 12-of-12 from the free-throw line in the process. Brandon Reed provided a spark from off the bench with 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting (3-of-4 from 3-point range). It wasn't the typical offensive performance for the Rambling Wreck, who rank just 11th in the ACC in scoring with 64.0 ppg and last in both field goal (.420) and free-throw percentage (.636), but luckily it is able to keep most of its games close thanks to its fourth-ranked scoring defense (60.6 ppg). Marcus Georges- Hunt paces the squad with 10.6 ppg, while Carter, Jr. brings 10.1 ppg, 6.9 rpg and nearly a block per contest to the table. Miller is simply a modest scorer (8.1 ppg), but he's still one of the most imposing big men in the conference with 6.9 rpg and a league-best 2.2 bpg.
Georgia Tech will have some extra motivation playing for its seniors in their final home game, but that energy will wear off as the game goes on against a talented NC State squad. The Wolfpack have struggled on the road this season (2-6), so another setback isn't out of the question, but expect them to take advantage of mismatches all over the floor to claim this one.