Feb. 19, 2012
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – NC State suffered through a tough shooting afternoon in falling 68-59 at North Carolina on Sunday at Carmichael Arena.
Bonae Holston scored a team-high 15 points to lead NC State (15-13, 4-10 ACC), while Krystal Barrett scored 12 points (9 in the second half) and Myisha Goodwin-Coleman added 11.
Tierra Ruffin-Pratt paced North Carolina (19-8, 9-5 ACC) with 23 points and 11 rebounds for her first double-double of the year, while Waltiea Rolle tossed in 12 points off the bench.
"It doesn't take a genius to pick up that stat sheet and figure out where the game was won and lost, between our offense and their defense," said head coach Kellie Harper.
Trailing 33-21 at the half, State cut its deficit to 39-32 after a Barrett bucket at the 14:21 mark.
UNC dug in and ran off 11 of the next 14 points to inch its lead back to 15, 50-35, on a Rolle free throw.
State scored the next five to make it 50-40 after a Barrett fastbreak layup, but the Heels had an answer with another 11-3 run to go back up 18, 61-43 with under five minutes to play.
The Wolfpack used its three-point snipers - Kastanek and Goodwin-Coleman – to get back in the game as they struck in a span of 29 seconds for consecutive treys to get within nine, 63-54, but could never muster up another run to get any closer in the closing minutes.
The Wolfpack shot just 26.4 percent (19-of-72) for the game, while UNC connected at a 46.3 percent clip.
"Our field goal percentage was too low to win games in the ACC, and I think that's two-fold," explained Harper. "I think you have to credit their defense and their length and I think we didn't work as hard as we needed to in the first half to get good shots. I thought we were impatient and took some tough shoots."
State did a great job of getting the Tar Heels into early first-half foul trouble, and made all five of its foul shots in the opening 20 minutes.
Marissa Kastanek (nine points) gave State a 12-11 lead by converting two free throws at the 12:14 mark of the first half.
But UNC responded with a 15-2 run to grab a 26-14 advantage with 5:47 until the half. Brittany Rountree’s three-point play, and four buckets from Ruffin-Pratt fueled the spurt.
The Pack went ice cold going 8:26 between field goals. A three-ball in the corner from Goodwin-Coleman snapped the drought and got State to within nine, 26-17.
Holston’s layup with 2:21 left in the first half pushed her past Jennifer Howard, and into 12th on the school’s all-time scoring list.
State trailed 33-21 at the break as the Tar Heels were able to shoot 46.7 percent. Ruffin-Pratt led all scorers with 13 points.
NC State visits Boston College on Thursday at 7 p.m., in Chestnut Hill, Mass. Next Sunday will be the regular-season finale and Senior Day for the Wolfpack against Maryland at 2 p.m., at Reynolds Coliseum.