So close, so painfully, eternally close—for the bulk of the afternoon, NC State played from behind, but never far behind, but far enough behind for the condition to prove terminal. NC State’s last rally fell short as Miami found enough clutch buckets to secure an 86-81 win in Raleigh.
Bruce Brown led the way for the Hurricanes with 19 points on 7-8 shooting; as a team, Miami hit 10 of 19 threes, which is just a wee bit above their season average three-point shooting percentage. Basketball is dumb, evidence item number 4,900,323,343,324.
Omer Yurtseven had another tremendous performance for NC State, scoring 28 points on 12-16 shooting. Torin Dorn and Al Freeman added 13 apiece.
It is perhaps a small miracle that State had a chance in the waning minutes of this game considering that neither Malik Abu nor Markell Johnson scored—though Markell did hand out 14 assists today. That’s a little reason for encouragement.
But the Wolfpack hurt itself too frequently in a game with slim margins, whether it was with poor defense or turnovers. NC State finished -5 in the turnover column, which is exactly the sort of thing that can be the difference between winning and losing a game like this one.