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Shooting carried the day for NC State at UNC, which was a perfectly-timed exception to the rule

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State’s performance Saturday was an extreme exception in the best way possible.

NCAA Basketball: North Carolina State at North Carolina Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

I have been trying to process the things that happened yesterday and it’s still difficult to do that. Because the box score doesn’t really match the result, and normally when this is the case—especially when UNC is involved—we end up on the short end of it.

I don’t want to say we definitely stole this game, since State played some seriously clutch-ass basketball on Saturday afternoon, but ... I mean, this is not usually the sort of performance that leads to victory.

This Worked Somehow

Four Factors NC State UNC
Four Factors NC State UNC
eFG% 54.6 55.6
TO% 11.1 17.3
OR% 28.3 41.7
FTR 23.7 27.8

And I am extremely okay with that. Beyond okay with it. I actually feel a little bit better about the win knowing that we kinda stole it. What we witnessed yesterday was highly, highly highly highly improbable, so put a mental asterisk next to it, because this is not a game you’re gonna want to forget.

Ultimately, it was shooting that carried the day for State—while UNC was getting twos, State was getting threes, and the Pack was also better at the free throw line, finishing 12-18 to UNC’s 11-20. Small margins in the shooting categories, plus a key +5 edge in the turnover category made the difference.