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Ken Stallings
23rd February 2009, 13:46
The road game against Wake is on 26 Feb. Wake will be hungry, having suffered a series of losses in recent weeks. They will be wanting to win out to secure a number one seed in the NCAA tournament.

However, while this isn't a game on paper you'd be willing to favor the Wolfpack in, we match up well against them. Further, it's more a matter of how Javi and Farnold play.

Our team is on the cusp of playing with and beating the "big boys." This is one against a big boy. If the NCAA is in the Pack's future, they will have to beat a team like this in a setting like this. Now's a good time to secure that quality win on the road.

Go Pack!

Ken

LSmith
23rd February 2009, 17:56
Wake is a team that is hard to figure out. They are as athletic as anyone in the nation and can pile up points in a hurry. They won their 1rst 16 games but are 5-5 in their last 10 games. Any team that can lose to Miami by almost 30 and then beat FSU by over 20 within a 10 day period has any odds maker scratching his head. Their only loss at home has been to VT however.

As you say it is a matter of how well Javi and Degand do. They have to limit turnovers in the back court and as a team we have to defend the perimeter well and keep Ish and Teague from penetrating at will. We seemed to have done a decent job of that against them in Raleigh.

One thing is certain. I cannot stomach another "in your face" slamfest by the Deacs like I saw at the end our game last season in Winston.

gjones1968
25th February 2009, 09:15
If the committment to defense continues we should be able to win out. The players have to understand that it starts with defense. The offense will take care of itself. Even if you don't score you can rebound, and defend and that's what the players have to do, to finish the season on a high note.

We gotta want is more than they do.:cool:

Steve M
25th February 2009, 11:46
This game will prove to me whether this team has put some weeknesses to bed or if the last few weeks of improvement was just a "flash in the pan". State has played good games this year when they are double digit dogs. Question is how hungry are they for a road win against a hungry/ranked/ACC/In-State opponent?

Derreck
26th February 2009, 11:16
I feel good about tonight. The Pack NEEDS this win to keep it's slim NCAA hopes alive.

LSmith
26th February 2009, 12:50
If we win tonight......


*Our conference record will improve to 6-7 which will tie us with Maryland and put us only one game behind Wake, BC, and VT all tied for 4th place. Did I say 4th place??? Could you imagined that would had been a possiblity even for discussion a couple weeks ago?? We are talking 1rst round bye in the ACC tourney and it is still possible if we win out and get a little help from some other teams (including Clemson and FSU tied for 3rd).

*It would be a big road win against a ranked opponent. A win that would boost our RPI greatly.

*A win tonight may not make us a NCAA "bubble" team but it would surely have us knocking on the "bubble" door and if we win out and pick up a couple wins in the ACC tourney we would bust that "bubble" wide open.

Go Pack!!!!!!

Matt Nicholson
26th February 2009, 13:05
A win tonight in Winston would make things really, really interesting.....

Stephen Sparks
26th February 2009, 17:48
We play good enough defense to win the game, we usually have an inordinately high amount of to's that lead to easy points for the other team.

If we limit the to's and that's a BIG IF, we will stand a great chance of winning the game. If not, oh well, we know the answer to that question.

If the pg's show up to play, and we get production from veteran players, we will get the w. We can't mail this one in or have a player decide to not show up from hear on out to stand a chance of winning the remainder of our games.

LSmith
26th February 2009, 19:01
We play good enough defense to win the game,

I just hope Wake plays defense like they did against Duke Sunday.

LSmith
26th February 2009, 19:24
So far it has been pretty good offensively but somebody's got to stop Ish from driving!

LSmith
26th February 2009, 19:35
Out rebounding us 17-4 with 5:34 left in the half. Thats just lack of hustle. We better get out of this funk in a hurry or this is going to get ugly!!!!

LSmith
26th February 2009, 19:38
And 6 fouls to 1 for Wake!!!!!!

Eshack
26th February 2009, 19:51
Pretty good run at them to end the half.

My nerves are better with us trailing by 8 rather than leading by 8!

Ken Stallings
26th February 2009, 20:03
Lousy transition defense. Wake in the first half shot over 63% from the field, but not because they shot lights out. It was because about three quarters of their shots were layups due to the inability of our team to get in position to deny Wake's excellent transition offense.

To emphasize that point, Wake attempted seven three point shots and made merely one! On the other hand, they shot 18-23 from the point blank range our weak defense allowed them.

The good news is we limited turnovers to a reasonable rate, but not excellent. The run to close the first half put the team squarely back into shooting range but the team must come out and shut down Wake's transition game.

Wake is essentially a one-trick pony. If you can shut down that transition game, then you stymie their offense. State is in this game despite allowing Wake to play their ideal half of basketball.

Ken

LSmith
26th February 2009, 20:14
Degand could be so good if he could only cut down on the brainfarts!!! That was an awesome drive to the basket!!! He has the quickness and athleticism we need at the point.

LSmith
26th February 2009, 20:54
We are fighting like hell!!! Win or lose I like this!!!

Ken Stallings
26th February 2009, 21:01
I don't have any significant complaints about the second half. We more than held our own in the second half. Dug ourselves a hole due to poor transition defense and then we whittled away most of it in the second half. But Wake earned their national ranking and withstood the rally.

By losing this game on the road, to entertain an NCAA bid, NC State must win out. Maryland and BC at home are winnable, and Miami is a bit of an enigma but that's on the road.

Our team is unquestionably playing far better and really is playing our best at the end of the season. This is the first road game where I think our guards did a very good job of protecting the basketball. For the first time since I can remember, we had fewer turnovers than a quality opponent (8 to 12). But more impressively, Javi and Farnold both had excellent assist to turnover ratios: Javi (6-3) and Farnold (5-2). This is likely the best game our two PG's have played against a quality opponent.

Tracy Smith missed a number of fairly short jumpers. But that's nit picking to the extent he shot 7-11 from the field and led all Pack scorers with 18. Costner and McCauley both had solid rebounding games. Unfortunately, James Johnson killed us on the boards with a monster 18! This complimented his 28 points. He was a one-man wrecking crew!

We did not lose this game by much and were really only a couple of stops and missed baskets away from winning. As it was, we had to foul at the end and Wake made everything.

Wake's Ishmael Smith also made two heaves from three point range at the buzzer. Take those two miracle shots from a generally ineffective perimeter shooter and we have a chance to win. But again, Wake's a very good team and they played well.

This was always considered a tough win on the road and we held our on. As a measurement, it shows we have improved and aren't far away. Wake played a very good game and I'm not sure any team in the nation would have beaten them at home the way they played. If we bring this kind of game against Maryland, BC, and Miami then I think we can run the slate and make a strong bid for the NCAA. Few of us would have thought that possible a few weeks ago.

Ken

Prowling Woofie
26th February 2009, 21:12
Johnson almost out-rebounded State by himself...

LSmith
26th February 2009, 21:13
Tough loss. The big stat I see is we were out rebounded 41-25. Part of that was hustle in the 1rst half and a big part is we were out classed athletically as we have been often this season.

Positives:

*I like the way the team fought down the stretch.
* Tracy Smith is becomming a stud!!! Awesome game inside!!
* Degand showed tremendous potential tonight. As quick and athletic as he is he could be very good if he could develop some basketball common sense.

There are still alot of great things that can happen with this team this season. We have to rebound from this and win our next 3 games. This could be a very good ACC tournament team.

Eshack
27th February 2009, 07:15
This team looks sooooo much better than last seasons team at this time!

I see improvement and the future is looking better IMO.

gjones1968
27th February 2009, 08:12
The Run they had and their transition game killed us. If this team will play much better defense in the last three games, we still have a shot at a .500 record in the ACC. Not bad after being 2-6 and left for dead.

They have to do a better job of controlling the tempo of the game. You have to know which teams you can and can't run against.

The committment to defense that lead us to a 3-1 record before the Wake game must continue. If it does we will win out and so some damage in the ACC tourney but, the mentality must be defense first.

Lack of hustle? Unacceptable!!!! This game is played with passion, emotion and want to!!!! You must want it more than the other team!!!!

On to Maryland.

packinjax
27th February 2009, 08:33
We do need to play defense, but you can't go on 7 minute scoring droughts.

Prowling Woofie
27th February 2009, 08:33
Definitely see improvement taking place, and that's ultimately what we needed this season.

You gotta walk before you can run...

20 pts, 11 assists, 5 to's from the pt guards last night (only 8 as a team) - not too shabby.

Steve M
27th February 2009, 11:38
State is playing better offensively. They will not beat Maryland unless the defensive effort improves.

Matt Nicholson
27th February 2009, 11:47
Vasquez will rip us a new one without our best defensive effort...