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NC State meets UConn with a Final Four trip on the line

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No sweat!

NCAA Womens Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Bridgeport Regional-UConn vs Indiana David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The last obstacle between NC State and the Final Four is the biggest—a UConn team that is as talented as usual, and one that also has the benefit of playing this game close to its campus. Tough circumstances, but the Wolfpack can handle them.

2021-22 UConn

... Adj OE/DE (rk) eFG% TO% OR% 2FG% 3FG%
... Adj OE/DE (rk) eFG% TO% OR% 2FG% 3FG%
Offense 111.3 (9) 54.1 (3) 17.4 (85) 34.5 (76) 55.3 (3) 34.3 (46)
Defense 73.8 (2) 40.1 (17) 20.8 (95) 26.5 (38) 38.5 (10) 28.7 (75)

This is a matchup of two of the best shooting teams in the country—the Huskies better inside the arc, the Wolfpack better from three. UConn has good size and star Paige Bueckers is a two-point-making machine. While she hasn’t been as prolific this season as she was as a freshman—a major knee injury has something to do with that—she’s still been an outstanding shooter.

Pretty much all of UConn’s rotation shoots better than 50% inside the arc, which is impressive. The leader among them is center Olivia Nelson-Ododa, who has made 62.3% of her twos.

The Huskies can present a lot of different problems with their shooting depth, which sounds a lot like another team I know. Four players are shooting 35% or better from three, which opens up opportunities in the paint.

It’s the toughest matchup of the tournament for NC State, by far, and it happens to come in the biggest game of the year to this point. I think we’ll see the Pack play better than they did on Saturday, and we know that they’re capable of winning on the road against elite teams. I think the pressure shifts to UConn a little bit here, and maybe that helps, too.

We’ll find out starting at 7 p.m. on ESPN.