WBB: To The Pitt


State takes on Pitt in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on Sunday February 11th at 12:00 p.m. The game will be streamed as an ACCNX.

State's 20-3 record is stellar, but because of Thursday's 72-61 home loss to VaTech and State's 8-3 conference record, it feels like it is not. Even if State had won Thursday, their remaining conference road games might have made it difficult to win the conference regular season championship. Now, it will be much harder. For a better change of winning the 2024 ACC Tournament Championship, State needs to finish no lower than 4th in the conference. Going to be tough to do that, but State can. State needs to start that journey with a big win at Pitt. Don't let one loss become two.

State has pretty much owned Pitt since they joined the conference. State has 10 wins to Pitt's 2. State's last loss to Pitt was in 2015; a 60-50 loss in Reynolds Coliseum. While State beat Pitt in Reynolds last season the score was pretty close; 68-63. From 2019 to 2022, State put a "whuppin" on Pitt.

From warrennolan:

Pitt has a Live RPI of 205, an overall record of 7-17, a conference record of 1-10, a NET of 160, an ELO of 213, a SOS of 55, a quad 1 NET record of 1-8 and a quad 1 RPI record of 0-8. Pitt's best win was a 56-52 win at NET 68 UVA.

State has a Live RPI of 6, an overall record of 20-3, a conference record of 8-3, a NET of 14, an ELO of 7, an SOS of 6, and quad 1 NET and RPI records of 6-3.

In Pitt's last game, a 76-60 home loss to FSU, Pitt started six-foot senior Liatu King, six-two grad student Jala Jordan, five-ten sophomore Aislin Malcolm, five-seven sophomore Marley Washenitz and five-seven freshman Jasmine Timmerson. Five-ten freshman Aaryn Battle played 19 minutes off the bench.

Pitt's leading scorer is King who is averaging 19.2 ppg. Malcolm is second at 9.6 ppg. King also leads Pitt in shooting from the field at 547 and rebounding at 10.5 rpg. King has not attempted a shot from the arc. Malcolm is Pitt's best arc shooter at 320. Pitt shoots as a team 399 from the floor; 269 from the arc.

With regard to predictions, RP found at warrennolan, predicts State to win 78-54 with a win-probability of 95%. Her Hoop Stats predicts, with the game at Pitt, State to win by a score of 75.5 to 55.8 with a win-probability of 94.3%.

Her Hoop Stats ratings are for State value 33.2 and rank 17/360. For Pitt the ratings are value 0.3 and rank 159/360 (can't recall seeing a value for a State opponent this low).

One thing I have been wondering about as State begins their journey in which four of their next five games are conference road games is whether State have a road win over a good conference team? The answer is probably no. State's best road win conference wise is the 72-61 win at NET 67 UVA. The next best thing to that and with regard to conference road games is State's one point loss at NET 15 VaTech, but Tech in dismissing State Thursday might have indicated that they overlooked us due to River Baldwin not playing and/or we caught them off guard with a change to a five out offense used for that game.

One thing which jumps out from Thursday night's game is Tech out rebounded us by 17 while we out rebounded them by 2 in the January 7th game at Tech. I have read comments which take the position that State due to the two preceding games' importance was a tired team and others who dismissed this standing. The rebounding difference between the two games referenced above makes me think that, yes, the Pack was both mentally and physically tired. Tech beat State to almost every loose ball.

Pitt is undersized for a power five conference member. Prior to River Baldwin's injury, I would predict State to dominate due to River's play inside. Since River's injury, she has not put-up numbers like she did in the Paradise Jam and in the home game against UVA. State not only should win, but they must win to stay in the race for conference and NCAA Tournament seeding.

Some under the radar for me good news from GoPack:

Former NC State women's basketball All-American Elissa Cunane has signed a training camp contract with the WNBA's Washington Mystics.

If Elissa makes the team, I will become a Mystics fan again. I was one when I lived in Northern Virginia and when they won their WNBA championship in 2019.

Go Pack! Go Elissa!