Observations From The Game: Morehead State

RALEIGH, NC -- A look at the highlights and low-lights of NC State's dominating 91-61 win over Morehead State on Sunday night.

  • The Zone Offense – Morehead State spent the entire night pressing NC State and playing a zone defense. The Pack seemed wasn't bothered much by either, but it did a particularly good job of picking apart the Eagles' zone all evening. After struggling in the halfcourt against UNCA, the Pack was deadly efficient on Sunday with a combination of dribble penetration and ball movement that kept
  • Defensive Intensity – An undersized and noticeably out-talented Morehead State team had little chance against the Pack regardless, but the defensive intensity that Mark Gottfried's team brought all night made it impossible for the Eagles to ever get into the game. Morehead State shot just 40 percent on the night and turned the ball over 16 times en route to the 30-point loss.
  • Howell & Painter, Part II – The absence of CJ Leslie and Thomas de Thaey has turned into an opportunity for Richard Howell and DeShawn Painter. The front court duo has delivered back-to-back stellar performances. Against Morehead State they played a combined 54 minutes and shot 17-of-19 from the floor. The lack of front court depth might prove to be a blessing in disguise during these early games as its allowed Painter and Howell to gain a lot of confidence on the court.
  • Scott Wood, Zone Killer – Whoever was in charge of scouting for the Eagles overlooked a rather key piece of the Pack's offensive formula – Scott Wood. After foul trouble limited him to 18 minutes on Friday, the junior guard exploded in the first half on Sunday going 5-for-8 from behind the arc and scoring 18 points. Morehead State apparently got the memo by the second half, as Wood went scoreless over the final 20 minutes, but by then the damage had been done and the game was essentially over.


  • No News on Thomas – Gottfried said after the game that there was no update on Thomas de Thaey, and he had 'no idea' when they would know his status. He doesn't expect the penalty to be as severe as the 10-game suspension Alex Len is server before playing for Maryland and he also hopes that the situation will be resolved soon. Until then all de Thaey and Pack fans can do is wait and hope for the best.
  • The Crowd – The excitement surrounding Gottfried and this year's team hasn't translated to the turnstiles yet for the Pack. The RBC Center was once again about half full on Sunday night, meaning the best attended 'game' of the season remains the Red-White contest played right after the football win over North Carolina.

Player of the Game
Richard Howell was both efficient and dominate in his 27 minutes on Sunday. He made 11-of-13 shots and led the team in both points with 25 and rebounds with eight. His highlight reel included a couple of circus shots around the basket and one monster one-handed dunk in the lane. Howell said after the game that his conditioning and weight loss is already paying dividends on the court.

Stat of the Game
The Pack had 26 assists on 33 made field goals, a large reason why the team shot 61 percent from the field against the Eagles. The Pack spread the wealth as well, with nine different players making field goals.

Gottfried on the Pack's progress so far:
"I still think we're a long way away. I don't want to knock Morehead or Asheville, but our competition is going to get much greater. We're a lot bigger than the teams we've played so far, but I like that we're playing the game the right way."

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