Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
|Off Reb Rate||28.1||25.8|
Heavens, where to begin. Each team airballed a free throw. NC State fouled a BC player on a three-point attempt twice. (Though the second was a phantom call.) The teams combined to shoot 72 free throws and the game lasted like two-and-a-half hours. Wins don't get much more painful than this, and Les Jones' crew was absolutely dreadful. If a basketball game takes that long without going into overtime, you're probably doing it wrong, refs.
State got off to a lame start, which allowed Boston College to lead by as many as seven points in the first half. The free throw problems cropped up in rather excruciating fashion over those first 20 minutes, as the Pack missed three front ends of 1-and-1s. You can only have a maximum of three 1-and-1 opportunities in a half, so that's pretty impressive in a way.
Calvin Leslie was silent at the offensive end for most of the game, and at one point Scott Wood had zero points and four fouls. Richard Howell didn't have his best day either, and NC State just couldn't figure out how to get consistent opportunities in the post against an undersized defense, which was surprising. T.J. Warren had some shots in close that he normally makes rim out.
But there was Rodney Purvis, who did quite a bit of bacon-saving in the second half. Twice he answered Lonnie Jackson threes with one of this own--the first cut a 58-54 BC lead to 58-57 and the second tied the game at 62. He was left wide the hell-ass open and to his credit, he knocked 'em down. This would seem like a good strategy on Boston College's part, as it simulates the free throw experience for Purvis, but it backfired this time.
Scott Wood was able to take it from there. He hit a three with less than four minutes to go to put State up 67-64, and his second three gave the Pack a four point edge with 50 seconds left, which proved the decisive basket of the game. Then the officiating went off the rails. Boston College missed a three on its next possession and Richard Howell grabbed the board in a crowd. As he went down to the floor with a BC player, it seemed clear he had possession of the ball, but the officials decided to call a jump ball, giving BC another opportunity. The Eagles missed another shot, which Ryan Anderson boarded after the most blatant pushoff in history, and then he was given an and-1 opportunity thanks to a phantom foul call on Rodney Purvis. (And this was only the first of two phantom foul calls on Purvis in the final 30 seconds.)
I don't like to be That Guy harping on officials after a victory, but good god, that was a bafflingly terrible sequence on their part.
Anyway. The Pomeroy Predictor had NC State winning 78-70 in a game with 66 possessions, so ultimately, the final score (and tempo) we got was in the ballpark of what we should have expected coming in. It was like torture the whole time, but hey, it's still a road win and a 1-0 start to ACC play.