Pack Tops Bucs, 86-50

RALEIGH -- Freshman Caleb Martin scored a season-high 17 points in his first start to help North Carolina State beat Charleston Southern 86-50 on Friday night.

Martin started in place of leading scorer Trevor Lacey, who sat out with an ankle injury. But the Wolfpack (8-1) had no trouble winning in the return to Reynolds Coliseum - the program's longtime former campus home - for a two-game set this weekend.

Ralston Turner also scored 17 as N.C. State ran off 22 straight points to blow the game open early, leading 46-20 by halftime and cruising in its first game since beating Wake Forest in an early Atlantic Coast Conference opener nearly a week earlier.

Cedrick Bowen scored 14 points to lead the Buccaneers (5-3), who hit their first shot for a 3-0 lead then went scoreless for 7-plus minutes to watch this one get away quickly.

Charleston Southern had as many turnovers (eight) as field goals in the opening half and finished the game shooting 31 percent.

N.C. State shot 51 percent and hit seven 3-pointers in its dominating first half and finished at 49 percent despite Lacey's surprise absence.

The Alabama transfer, who was averaging 16.8 points and shooting 51 percent, had a brace on his right ankle and was dressed out on the bench. Team spokesman Josh Rattray said Lacey tweaked his ankle during Wednesday's practice, missed Thursday's practice and didn't play in a last-minute decision.

Of course, it didn't really matter with the way the Wolfpack - Martin, in particular - started this one.

Martin, a 6-foot-6 wing, hit a 3-pointer for N.C. State's first basket on the way to a personal 5-for-5 start. He knocked down a pullup jumper to match his season high of 15 points barely 9 minutes into the game.

Martin set his new season scoring high with a tip-in a minute into the second half for a 48-20 lead.

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