Why NCSU Victory Over Clemson Was Historic – BlackSportsOnline
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Credit: Jason Huber

College Basketball

Why NCSU Victory Over Clemson Was Historic

Credit: Jason Huber

It’s Day two at the Spectrum center and we are underway with Game 1, NC State Wolfpack vs Clemson Tigers.

In their first meeting in ACC play, NCSU defeated Clemson with a game thriller, 3point buzzer beater, by Braxton Beverly – his only three of the game. NCSU leads the Tigers in their all-time series, 102-53. Under the leadership of Kevin Keatts, NCSU has had 20 back-to-back winning seasons in his first two years becoming the 11th coach to do so in the ACC.

Clemson walks in looking for their second straight victory over NCSU in ACC Tournament play. It’s also worth noting, Clemson has won 8 of its last 12 ACC games, including last 4 of its last 5.

In the first half it was all Clemson, Marcquise Reed, who’s one of two guys in the country averaging 19.0 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.0 assist and 2.0 steals a game (in the first half alone, he accomplished two of those feats), attacked NCSU head first. With his dynamic presence on the court, Reed has been able to shut down NCSU’s defense and offensively take over the game. But it didn’t last long.

As trailing by as much as 18, NCSU pulled the wool over Clemson and struck back! In the second half, NCSU’s Markell Johnson created magic on the court giving NCSU their first lead since the first half with a huge 3 with 5:38 to go in the half. Johnson didn’t stop there, he then followed up with another huge three giving Wolfpack fans charge of the arena.

Johnson seemed to smile a little harder when that second three went down and credited his teammates for having his back.

I knew my teammates had my back from whatever, like from when I shot that three. They had my back the whole game, but they really boosted me. They really helped me. They encouraged me to keep going there down the stretch.

During halftime, Keatts said that his team was disappointed and a little added fact for Keatts, this win counted as the 2nd biggest comeback in ACC tournament history after halftime.

Well, we were all disappointed. The team that you saw in the first half was not NC State basketball, and for us to get to this point and play that way we did in the first half, we weren‘t happy. So honestly, it was — I’m not a guy to yell all the time, but there was a little yelling going on, and give these guys credit. I thought they responded

NCSU doesn’t have too much time to gloat in their win, tomorrow they face ACC Conference Champions, Virginia.

I think my team is very confident. Our last two games we were able to go on the road and play great defensively against Boston College, and we held them to 26.7 percent, and then we put together a great second half, obviously, today, and so we’re going in as a confident team. We know that they’re a very good basketball team. We respect — Tony has done a tremendous job with their program, but our guys are excited to play.

Tune into tomorrow at 12:30 pm, NCSU vs Virginia.