Gottfried Press Conference Audio
As a young team, NC State has a lot to learn but took another step forward in their 81-66 win over Campbell on Saturday night. Here are our game notes:
– State would have crushed Campbell if it weren’t for their sloppy first half (6 turnovers) and awful free throw shooting (2-12 on the game). The turnover thing kind of figured itself out in the second half and the guys started clicking a little more, but Campbell and their matchup zone kind of took State out of their game early on. As for the FT’s…well, I have nothing to say about that. These are some of the top players coming out of high school, you’d think they would be able to focus and knock down free shots at a clip better than 17%.
– TJ Warren once again was State’s leading scorer. He dropped 23 on 10-20 shooting. We keep saying it, but this guy is a legit pro. He makes 23 points look so effortless. He’s running the floor, scoring off the dribble, nailing floaters and sinking 3s. As Warren goes, so goes NC State this season.
– Tyler Lewis had an off game shooting, but don’t let that fool you. This is the sign of a true point guard. He couldn’t hit anything going 2-11, but he racked up 9 assists, 8 rebounds and had only 1 turnover. This shows a lot to me. He couldn’t find his touch but he helped his team in every other way possible.
– Welcome to the big show Beejay Anya. With Kyle Washington and Lennard Freeman getting most of the minutes recently, it seemed as if Anya was the odd man out. That changed when it was clear that neither guy was making a huge difference against a bigger, more physical Cincy team. Gott turned to Anya a bit in that one and liked what he saw. When Beejay checked in with about 6 minutes left in the first half, he came with another impressive showing. In 15 minutes Anya racked up 4 points, 4 boards and 3 blocks. This line may not look all that impressive but he was a huge spark and his point, boards and blocks came at very big moments and helped State make the run that finished off the Camels. Anya still needs to get in better shape, but tonight we saw that he has game changing abilities. He was blocking shots, altering shots and just making it hard for the Camels to get off anything clean in the paint. On offense he’s still raw but he loves to throw that body around. If he can transform that fat into muscle this offseason teams better watch out.
– Cat Barber is turning the corner. Now, I say that, but he has played good basketball every game so far, however tonight he was dominant at times. Tonight he showed us glimpses of what he really could turn into. He’s got such a quick first step and is so slippery when he goes to the hoop that it’s hard to stay with him. Add in the fact that he can finish really well with both hands around the basket and you’re looking at a kid who could be a superstar when all is said and done. Barber had 11 points and 2 boards in this one, but had some real highlight reel drives and finishes.
– Dez Lee keeps on doing it. I can’t say enough about this guy. He’s the real deal. You’re looking at a kid who is 4 games into his NC State career and he’s already probably their 2nd best option to score. He’s got great body control, soft touch around the rim and a fearless way about him on both ends of the floor. He filled up the stat sheet again with 11 points, 5 boards, 2 steals, 1 assist and only 1 TO. State hasn’t had an all around 2 guard like this in a long, long time.
– Ralston Turner is starting to prove to people that he can fill the shoes of Scott Wood…somewhat. He’s not going to be as prolific a shooter as Wood was but he’s not too far behind. Turner had 13 points (6-9 shooting), played good defense, led the team with 4 steals, grabbed 3 boards. If anything, he’s just as valuable as Wood because he can do it on both ends. He’s a more well rounded player even though he’s not quite as deadly from beyond the arc.
– Lennard Freeman is coming along. Talk about a kid who is going to just work his tail off to get minutes. Sure he’s barely 18 years old, but he’s built like a man and he’s using that frame to do damage in the paint. Tonight he may have had his best game with 8 points and 7 boards to go along with 2 assists, 2 steals and a block. Very encouraging play from the fresman.
-On the other hand, Kyle Washington only played 7 minutes in this one. You had Freeman playing well and Anya having his coming out party, so for Washington it’s going to be tough to break in unless he shows a little more physicality. State needs rebounding and they need strong interior play, whoever can give them that will earn minutes.
– Playing time for the bigs will get even more complicated when Vandenberg comes back. We heard it’s looking like 2 weeks until he returns but he swears it will be sooner. We’ll see about that, but his absence may have been a blessing in disguise. It has really thrown the freshmen bigs into the fire and gotten them game ready, but make no mistake, this teams needs the senior big man.
NC State 84 BC 78: BOX SCORE
NC State is a Slight Underdog in ACC Opener vs. Boston College
NC State (4-2) will play their first ACC game of the 2023-24 season tomorrow on the road against Boston College (5-2), and they enter the game as slight underdogs. The Wolfpack are 1.5-point underdogs, and the Total is 150.5.
- NC State is 0-2 Straight Up as underdogs
- BC is 4-1 Straight Up as favorites.
- NC State is 2-4 Against the Spread.
- BC is 4-3 Against the Spread
- The Total has gone Under in 2 games for NC State, Over in 3 and Pushed in 1.
- The Total has gone Under in 3 games for Boston College and Over in 4.
- NC State is 6-4 in their last 10 games against BC Straight Up.
- NC State is 4–6 Against the Spread in their last 10 games against BC.
- The Total has gone Under in 5 games, and Under in the other 5.
#5 NC State 70 Vanderbilt 62: BOX SCORE (with notes)
The 5th ranked NC State Women’s Basketball team improved to 8-0 tonight, defeating Vanderbilt 70-62 in the inaugural ACC/SEC Challenge.
- Saniya Rivers scored 20+ points for the 2nd time this season, scoring 22 points on 8 of 14 shooting. She also chipped in 8 rebounds and 2 steals.
- River Baldwin posted her first double-double of the season. She scored 12 points and grabbed 10 boards.
- Aziaha James has now scored in double figures in 7 of 8 games, scoring 14 points tonight, shooting 6 of 10 from the field and 2 of 3 from beyond the arc.
- Freshman Zoe Brooks led the Pack in steals (4) and assists (4).
- NC State didn’t shoot well, making only 39% of their shots. Fortunately, they held Vandy to 34.3% shooting.
The Wolfpack will host Illinois State on Sunday at 2pm.
NC State Stat Leaders Heading into the ACC Opener vs Boston College
This Saturday, NC State heads to Boston College for the now-annual early ACC opener. The Pack will face off against the Eagles at 4pm on ACC Network. Here is where the team is statistically after 6 games.
- Casey Morsell leads NC State in scoring with 14.5 ppg.
- The Pack has 4 double-digit scorers this season. Morsell (14.5), Jayden Taylor (13.3), DJ Burns (13) and DJ Horne (11.2)
(Last season State had 4 double-digit scorers as well. Terquavion (17.9), Joiner (17), Burns (12.5) and Morsell (11.8))
- After their top 4 scorers there is a big dip. Parker comes in at 6.8, O’Connell at 6.3, and Middlebrooks at 5.5 ppg.
(Last season Jack Clark was 5th on the team in scoring at 9 points and Mahorcic was at 8.7. However, both guys missed a large chunk of the season.)
- Burns is leading NC State in rebounding this year at 5.3 per game. Diarra is next with 5.3 (but is currently hampered by an ankle injury.)
- O’Connell is leading NC State in assists with 3.3 per game, and Burns is up next with 2.5. PG DJ Horne is only averaging 2.
- LJ Thomas and Mike O’Connell are tied in leading the team at .15 assists per minute.
- Jayden Taylor is leading NC State in 3pt %, shooting an outstanding 45.8%, while Morsell is up next at 34.6%. Horne is close behind at 33%.
(LJ Thomas is shooting 50% from 3, but only has 2 attempts.)
- Burns is leading the bigs, shooting 56.5% from the floor, while Middlebrooks is close behind at 54.2%. Dennis Parker Jr is coming in at 45.2%.
- For the guards, it’s Casey Morsell leading the way at 44.6% from the floor, while O’Connell is next up at 43.4%. Taylor is shooting 42.4%, and DJ Horne is struggling a bit, shooting just 34.8% from the field.
- Jayden Taylor is turning the ball over the most at 1.8 times per game, while Burns is next at 1.7. Morsell is at 1.5 and O’Connell is at 1.2. DJ Horne has been doing a good job of protecting the basketball, turning it over just .3 times per game.