01 December 2009

Recap: NU 65 NC St 53

NC State did not look like a good team save for that beast Smith down low. The feeling of the game was that NU was in complete control and only temporarily let the game slip from their grasp after some dumb turnovers. NU's defense was suffocating and disruptive as NC State never seemed comfortable on offense. Carmody Court expects the defense to win games this year against teams that lack experience and/or above average passing skills at the collegiate level at most positions.

But, the obvious story of the game was Juice Thompson. Hands down, Juice was the best guy on the court. Period. Sure, Smith from NC State had his way down low and commanded extra NU attention. But it was Juice Thompson who came up with the big bucket or called the right play and got the ball to the right guy at the right time in this game.

Nash had a stellar game. Until the refs jobbed him with a couple of poor calls that sent him to the bench for much of the second half. To be sure, his absence played a major part in NC State mounting any semblance of a comeback in this game. Carmody Court does not like the strategy of posting Nash. He's too short and not quick enough to score against small forwards. Scrap that one, coach.

Shurna picked up where he left off and had a good first half. NC State focused on stopping him in the second half with Horner playing tight defense on the wily soph. That opened things up for the guards which Thompson took advantage of. No worries about the second half drop off -- it's more of a sign of respect for Shurna's presence and skill than poor play.

Marcotullio had what we'd call an average game. Missed some open looks, forced some shots, but made some dagger 3s at opportune times, and played good defense. He panicked a couple of times which resulted in bad turnovers and easy NC State points, but he is a frosh after all.

Rowley confounds Carmody Court. Once he had the ball under control and in position, he is tough to stop. However, he bobbles the ball way too much and doesn't get himself into position nearly enough. Still a work in process. He also needs to realize that he's 7 foot and take it hard to the hole with the ball up high. Worst thing to happen would be a foul which is ok by Carmody Court as Kyle shows nice form from the charity stripe.

Mirkovic played ok. Showed some nice offensive moves but was prone to the questionable pass that also resulted in NC State points in the second half. Still, Mirkovic deserves the majority of minutes at the center spot.

Crawford was pretty invisible. That's actually not a bad thing for a frosh. Still a work in process.

Peljusic only played because Nash got into foul trouble. It was curious that Curletti played only a couple of minutes - was he hurt or just matched-up poorly against the burly and athletic NC State front court?

Overall, a good win for NU. NC State looks to be a bottom tier ACC team, but a win on the road in a hostile environment is always a good thing. NU is off for a dozen days for finals and next hosts NC A&T on Dec 13. In the meantime enjoy basking in the glow of the last few games Cats fans.