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NC State goes ice cold in 2nd half at UNC and loses, 66-60

Ten-minute field goal droughts are a real good way to lose.

NCAA BASKETBALL: MAR 23 Div I Women’s Championship - First Round - Maine v NC State Photo by Michael Berg/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The game was going swimmingly for NC State right up until somebody put a lid on the rim. The Wolfpack had a 10-point halftime lead that it maintained through the opening five minutes of the second half, and then all the wheels caught fire and fell off. Or uh, turned into an ice cube and fell off? You know what, it’s not important.

NC State ended up scoring only eight points in the third quarter as UNC came back to tie the game heading into the fourth. Including a portion of the last quarter, State went 10+ minutes without a field goal, and with that the game slipped away.

State shot 7-30 from the field in the second half, with everyone not named Ace Konig (3-4 from three in the second half) struggling mightily. The open jumpers that fell in the first half were errant over the final 20 minutes, and the Tar Heels hit some tough shots of their own to fully capitalize.

Elissa Cunane had a rough night in the paint, finishing 3-11 from the field with five turnovers. She never did find her comfort level, and that led to the Wolfpack settling for too many jump shots. They needed to find some alternative offense during the drought and didn’t do it. UNC deserves credit as well for limiting State to only five offensive boards all night. The Pack was one-and-done throughout the cold spell, which just made it all the more difficult to halt.

Disappointing performance, and also rather annoying that it had to happen against UNC, but I gotta say it’s a nice relief to not be white-knuckling it through bubbletown like the men’s team does all the dang time. Makes it easier to shrug off losses like this one.