NC State's late surge lifts Wolfpack past UNCG
GREENSBORO, N.C. - UNC Greensboro trailed by just four points at halftime, but North Carolina State used a 20-4 second-half run to blow open a tight game as UNCG fell to the Wolfpack on Thursday at the Greensboro Coliseum, 89-67.
Ben Stywall finished with 18 points and 13 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season and second in a row to pace UNCG (2-10), while Brandon Evans (14), Korey Van Dussen (12) and Brian Cole (10) were also in double figures for the Spartans. Cole, a freshman from Dacula, Ga. who was making his first collegiate start, posted career highs in both points and rebounds (five).
Tracy Smith finished with a game-high 21 points to lead NC State (10-3), which also got 17 from Dennis Horner and 15 apiece from Scott Wood and Javier Gonzalez. The Wolfpack extended a tenuous six-point margin by scoring 40 points over the final 11 minutes.
UNCG trailed just 32-28 at the half and 49-43 with 10:48 to play, but saw NC State's offense come roaring to life to seize control. A Josh Davis jumper ignited the big run, which saw six different Wolfpack players score. Wood had a pair of 3-pointers in the spurt, including one that made it 69-47 with 5:38 to play.
The Wolfpack went 6-for-7 from the floor in the run, and did not commit a turnover in the second half until just 5:07 remained in the game - part of a span of 20 minutes with miscue. NC State had just three turnovers in the second half and 11 for the game.
The Wolfpack kicked off the second half with an 11-4 run to put its lead in double digits for the first time in the second half at 43-32 with 15:35 to play.
The Spartans answered with an 11-6 run, with Stywall scoring six of those points, to get their deficit back down to six at 49-43 before NC State turned in its game-changing spurt.
Things got off to a rocky start for the Spartans, as NC State rushed out to a 7-0 lead. Consecutive layups from Kyle Randall and Evans got UNCG back within a possession before Wood drained a 3-pointer to make it 10-4. Cole hit a layup of his own to cut it to four points before the Wolfpack rattled off a 10-0 run over the next 4:15.
Cole would snap the run, rebounding his own miss on a baseline jumper and dropping in a floater from just outside the lane to make it 20-8 with 10:36 to play. NC State answered with a Farnold Degand 3, but a Brandon Evans layup kicked off a 12-2 run - which Korey Van Dussen finished with a pair of layups - to make it 25-20.
UNCG would twice cut it one possession in the closing minutes of the opening half - first on a pair of free throws from Stywall and then on a layup from Elhanan Bone - but could never tie.
UNCG out-rebounded NC State on both ends of the floor, holding a 38-27 advantage overall and a 16-6 mark on the offensive glass. The Wolfpack shot 55.4 percent from the floor (31-of-56) on the night, including 68 percent (19-of-28) in the second half. UNCG shot 43.5 percent (27-of-62) from the floor for the game.
The Wolfpack shot twice as many free throws as UNCG (22-11) and hit 10 3-pointers to just four for the Spartans. Wood had five of NC State's triples.
UNCG returns to action on Sunday with its final game against an ACC opponent this season. The Spartans host Maryland at 1 p.m. at the Greensboro Coliseum. The contest will be televised on CSN Mid-Atlantic.
NC STATE 89, UNCG 67
NC STATE (11-3)
Tracy Smith 9-14 3-6 21; Dennis Horner 6-10 4-5 17; Scott Wood 5-7 0-0 15; Javier Gonzalez 5-7 2-2 15; Farnold Degand 3-5 1-1 8; Julius Mays 0-1 4-4 4; Richard Howell 0-0 3-4 3; C.J. Williams 1-4 0-0 2; DeShawn Painter 1-2 0-0 2; Josh Davis 1-5 0-0 2; Johnny Thomas 0-1 0-0 0; Kendall Smith 0-0 0-0 0; Enrico Kufuor 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 31-56 17-22 89.
Ben Stywall 6-10 6-6 18; Brandon Evans 5-12 3-4 14; Korey Van Dussen 5-6 0-0 12; Brian Cole 5-13 0-1 10; Kyle Randall 3-11 0-0 6; Elhanan Bone 2-3 0-0 4; Kendall Toney 1-6 0-0 3; Deangelo Jackson 0-0 0-0 0; Mike Hardiman 0-0 0-0 0; Montel Smith 0-1 0-0 0; Brandon Davis 0-0 0-0 0; Robby Dilmore 0-0 0-0 0; Darrius Sellers 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 27-62 9-11 67.
Halftime: NC State 32-28. 3-point goals--NC State 10-18 (Scott Wood 5-7; Javier Gonzalez 3-4; Farnold Degand 1-2; Dennis Horner 1-3; C.J. Williams 0-1; Julius Mays 0-1), UNCG 4-14 (Korey Van Dussen 2-2; Brandon Evans 1-3; Kendall Toney 1-5; Kyle Randall 0-1; Brian Cole 0-2; Ben Stywall 0-1). Fouled out-- NC State-None, UNCG-None. Rebounds--NC State 27 (Tracy Smith 8), UNCG 38 (Ben Stywall 13). Assists--NC State 18 (Javier Gonzalez 5), UNCG 10 (Korey Van Dussen 4). Total fouls--NC State 12, UNCG 18. Technical fouls--NC State-None, UNCG-None. A-5072
FREE THROWS: UNCG coach Mike Dement said after he wasn't sure whether Pete Brown and Mikko Koivisto would be ready by Sunday. Neither dressed due to a stomach bug... UNCG has outrebounded four of its five ACC foes this season... NC State has had at least three players score in double figures in 11 of 13 games this season... the 89 points were a season-high for the Wolfpack... Fans should note that the game Sunday starts at 1 p.m. - a change due to television. Some tickets (mostly season tickets) have a 2 p.m. start time on them.
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