NC State had a 14-point lead with five-and-a-half to go and appeared well on the way to a comfortable, albeit ugly, victory. Virginia Tech had other ideas, though, and put a run together that cut State’s lead to just two with a couple minutes left.
Thankfully, the Pack had Jakia Brown-Turner to step up in the game’s biggest moment. It was her steal and basket with a little over a minute left that pushed the lead back to four and gave the team a chance to take a quick breath. The Hokies did not score in those last two minutes.
Pace and Efficiency
It figured that NC State might be in for a bit of a hangover after the big win against Louisville, but I didn’t expect it to be quite this extensive. Good thing that Virginia Tech felt like joining the shot-missing party!
JBT was State’s best player all afternoon and the only member of the Wolfpack to reach double figures. She scored 14 on 6-10 shooting. Elissa Cunane had a miserable afternoon, shooting just 2-16. All of the starters outside of JBT struggled, but the Hokies were just as bad, so in the end, the Pack’s troubles didn’t matter.
This was a big, big win for NC State’s regular-season ACC title hopes. Tech came in tied for second and with only one loss in league play, so State could have lost some of the ground it gained Thursday by losing to the Hokies. Now the Pack has just a bit more cushion, with one more tough game out of the way.