Talking Points: State responds against BC; can they win out?
Posted February 28, 2013
1. Between Rodney Purvis reminding everyone that he's got incredible skill in transition and Scott Wood going 5-of-10 from beyond the arc, it was easy to forget C.J. Leslie was originally scheduled to be the main attraction following the Wolfpack's loss to North Carolina.
Admittedly, the hand-wringing over Leslie's performance in Chapel Hill got to be a bit much, but the lingering question over how he would respond to the challenge put forth by Mark Gottfried to be the great player NC State needed remained. He was, for the most part, in 29 minutes against Boston College.
After both squads shrugged off a sluggish start (a byproduct of playing the Eagles it seems, just ask Duke), Leslie finished 10 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocked shots. He also cut down the turnovers from six against the Heels to only two against Boston College.
2. Purvis had his best performance since NC State's last-second loss to Miami at the beginning of February. The freshman had gone 7-of-25 from the field in a five-game stretch and lost his starting spot along the way.
Purvis came alive against Boston College and led all scorers with 21 points on 8-of-11 shooting. Several of those buckets came off of fantastic transition interplay with Lorenzo Brown.
"We changed the lineup, that's not a fun thing to do when you're that guy," Gottfried said. "It's the way life works. When you work hard, good things happen for you."
3. Lorenzo Brown continues to deal with lingering effects of an ankle injury. He powered through for 30 minutes and scored 17 points, but Brown was eventually taken off the court once Boston College no longer posed a threat.
NC State doesn't play again until Sunday against Georgia Tech, giving Brown an extra day to rest and have his ankle evaluated on Friday.
4. The Wolfpack moved to 9-6 in ACC play with three very winnable games to close out the regular season. It looks like they'll be the 5th seed at the ACC Tournament, but a little help from Virginia potentially stumbling down the stretch could bump NC State up to the 4th seed.
Before anyone gets ahead of themselves projecting when the Wolfpack will play in Greensboro or where they'll be seeded in the NCAA Tournament, the team needs to take care of its business. That's been easier said than done this season.
While NC State has won four of the last five games, they have been inconsistent between those games and from half to half. The Wolfpack were taken to overtime at home by Virginia Tech, supposedly turned a corner against Florida State, and then proceeded to lay an egg against North Carolina a few days later. No point in predicting how they'll respond to the Yellow Jackets on Sunday.
Hey, at least the Wolfpack keep things interesting.