Thursday, December 18, 2008

WOLFPACK PAYBACK



Pack outlasts Pirates 87-76

He's back. He's finally back. After a one year hiatus in which an injured knee and some personal problems hijacked his season, Brandon Costner had his 2008 coming out party. Playing with a bruised rib, Costner dropped 24 points and cleaned up 17 boards as he paced the Pack in their 87-76 victory over the ECU Pirates. It was only one year ago when the Pack walked out of Minges Coliseum stunned and embarrassed after taking a 75-69 loss to the Pirates. But this was a different day, and a very different team. With basically the same personnel (minus Grant and Hickson) the Wolfpack are showing a very different look. They are more unselfish, more disciplined, smarter, and more of a team than they were at any point last season.

Defense was the name of the game as the Pack held the Pirates to 38% shooting by staying in the passing lanes and playing impeccable team defense. Costner and McCauley were near unstoppable inside and out as State shot to the tune of 52% from the floor. This was even with ECU playing an aggressive 1-3-1 zone, which was designed to take away the inside game of McCauley(20 and 6), Costner, and Smith(11 and 2). But it was those three that imposed their will and led the Pack to victory.

We at WolfpackHoops were very impressed with a few things that we felt were the keys to success tonight. Obviously, the play of Brandon Costner was a breath of fresh air. Costner holds a very important key to the Wolfpack's season. If he can play like he did tonight, State will be a very tough team to beat. Remember, following the 06-07 season Costner was a on a lot of people's lists of players to watch nationally. Another big surprise was the play of Dennis Horner. He was extremely active in his 11 minutes on the floor. In his first action of the night, Horner grabbed an offensive rebound and had a nice put back followed by a vicious block on the other end. Lastly, we were extremely impressed (as usual) by the play of Ben McCauley and Tracy Smith. These two guys are starting to look unstoppable when they get their man 1 on 1 in the post. Whether it be Ben's crafty pivots or Tracy's pure power and athleticism, there hasn't been a team that has found an answer for these two. Having two dominant centers will surely come in handy come ACC time.

Overall it was a very good showing and a nice piece of payback handed out by the Pack, who by the way was minus one of their top scorers and senior leader, Courtney Fells, who missed the game with a bruised calf. If this game was a sign of things to come, then we are very optimistic about the remainder of the season.

NOTES:

-PG Farnold Degand saw his first significant action since Nov. 15th and looked fast, but still not 100%

-PF Javi Gonzalez hit a half court shot with .01 seconds remaining in the first half to give NC STATE a lead (45-42) at the half.

-State out-rebounded the Pirates 39-35

-State had 16 assists on 27 FG; a stat that continues to be a good one for the Pack and shows the unselfishness and offensive flow the Wolfpack have shown lately

-Attendance: 16,763

ECU vs. NCSU Box Score


comments

1 Response to "WOLFPACK PAYBACK"
  1. Matt said...
    December 18, 2008 at 4:07 PM

    This site is indeed impeccable

 

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