North Carolina State will aim to get back in the win column Tuesday when it welcomes Notre Dame to Raleigh, N.C.
The Wolfpack (15-5, 5-4 ACC) are coming off an 80-69 road loss to rival North Carolina. The defeat snapped a four-game winning streak for NC State. The Wolfpack were outscored in the paint 41-27, and UNC went 36-for-39 from the free throw line.
“We actually made six more field goals than UNC. I’ve never been involved with a game where a team has taken 39 free throws,” Wolfpack coach Kevin Keatts said. “So that means we have to get a little bit more aggressive.”
While speaking to reporters Monday, Keatts was unsure if star guard Terquavion Smith would play against Notre Dame. After taking a hard foul from Leaky Black midway through the second half on Saturday, Smith had to be taken off the floor on a stretcher. It was later determined that he suffered a neck and right elbow injury.
“He’s very sore,” Keatts said. “I would say it’ll be a game-time decision. But, you know, it’s going to be tough because I don’t even know if he could shoot the basketball at this moment.”
Smith leads NC State in scoring this season with 18.7 points per game. Jarkel Joiner is second with 16.3 points per game.
Notre Dame (9-11, 1-8) is coming off its third straight loss, falling at home on Saturday to Boston College, 84-72. BC outscored the Irish 28-16 in the paint. BC also shot 56.9 percent from the floor and 57.9 percent from 3-point land.
Nate Laszewski scored a career-high 29 points for Notre Dame, but it wasn’t enough to give the Irish the edge over the Eagles.
The loss to Boston College was the first game Notre Dame played since coach Mike Brey announced he would retire at the end of the season.
“As I looked at the big picture and looked moving forward, I just thought a new voice is needed,” said Brey, who has been the coach at Notre Dame since 2000. “Maybe we can get a little magic back in Greensboro when we go down there in two months (for the ACC tournament).”
–Field Level Media