If NC State is feeling the strain of being on the NCAA tournament bubble, it certainly did not show Sunday night. The Wolfpack came out shooting well, then continued to shoot well, then kept on shooting well—which I feel was a major key. Florida State, meanwhile, looked unfocused the majority of the night, and the result was an easy 92-72 win for the Pack.
Pack vs. Noles
NC State won this game in every respect that matters: it shot better, rebounded better, took better care of the basketball. Florida State’s suspect defense had no answers, and the Seminoles couldn’t find enough stops to mount a rally in the second half. FSU also went 0-for-the-game from three-point range.
Al Freeman scored 25 points on 7-13 shooting to lead the way, and Torin Dorn was equally good, scoring 19 on 8-14 shooting, including several tough finishes against contact near the rim. When Dorn is making tough baskets like he was tonight, the Wolfpack is really tough.
Early foul trouble plagued the bigs as the referees decided to get whistle-happy at both ends in the first 10 minutes, but NC State also operated with a comfortable lead after that opening segment, which made the fouls a non-issue. FSU never led in the game.
This game had significant to tournament implications since FSU and NC State had similar league records coming in and both are working to solidify an at-large bid. The Pack’s ability to take care of business under the circumstances, against a pretty good team—on most nights, anyhow—was impressive. I don’t know if State is in the NCAAs for sure now, but it is darn close.