|Off Reb Rate||26.3||41.5|
Shortly before the start of NC State's game against Maryland on Monday night, we learned that T.J. Warren wasn't going to play--an ankle injury he suffered late in the Duke game was the culprit. At that point, I think we all had the same thoughts running through our heads; that is, once we were able to stop crying and process thoughts. Maybe that was just me. MOVING ON
And NC State started just as anybody might have guessed a Warren-less Wolfpack would've--there was an over-reliance on Cat Barber and Ralston Turner, who demonstrated in painful detail just how bad their shot selection could be. Somehow State built a 7-0 lead to start the game, but the signs weren't encouraging considering how much time it took to score those seven points. Maryland inevitably answered back. By the end of the first half, the Terps were in control.
Then those final 20 minutes. It's not like this win was a momentous outcome or anything approximating one, but it played out in a way so incongruent with the rest of the season that it felt disorienting in that holy-crap-we-won sense. The tenor of the game shifted dramatically, and I didn't figure it would hold.
But there was Turner, knocking down big three after big three; he even found time to hit a two-point jumper. Barber hit four of five in the second half. These guys were a combined 3-of-16 in the first half. They were 10-of-16 in the second, and that includes Turner's 5-of-10 effort from beyond the arc.
NC State has to make up ground during this homestand, and tonight was the start. It was also a delightful goodbye to Maryland, which is moving to Iowa or something.