The Wolfpack fell behind early and never challenged Florida State in one of its worst performances of the season. The Pack was sluggish and turnover-prone in a 78-52 loss the Seminoles at Donald L. Tucker Center.
Turnovers kept the Pack (14-13, 4-10 ACC) from finding any flow on offense, as the Seminoles (18-11,6-9) forced 19 turnovers – 14 of those coming in the first half. State also shot just 40 percent from the field, a far cry from the nearly 50 percent shooting the Pack has averaged during the season.
For the second straight game, the Pack failed to get Ben McCauley the ball in the post. Besides scoring, McCauley creates opportunities for his teammates with his passing ability. The sophomore big man had just two points on 1-of-4 shooting before fouling out with three minutes left. Engin Atsur also struggled from the field, shooting 3-of-12 from the field and finishing with eight points.
Al Thorton, who was honored prior to the game on Senior Day, led all scorers with 17 points. Gavin Grant led the Pack with 15 points, six rebounds, seven assists and six turnovers. State lost Brandon Costner, the team's leading scorer and rebounder, early in the second half when an errand arm to the face jarred loose a tooth. The resilient freshman returned with eight minutes left in the game, finishing with 14 points.
The Pack was off from the opening tip-off, as the Seminoles (18-11, 6-9) jumped out to a 10-2 lead. Despite shooting 44 percent from the field, the Pack offense never got into a rhythm in the half. The Wolfpack committed 14 first-half turnovers and scored just 21 points in the half.
The Seminoles shot a scorching 63 percent from behind 3-point arc and 50 percent from the field, jumping out to as much as a 21-point lead over the Pack in the first half. The 'Noles had eight different players score in the first half, taking a 39-21 lead into the break.
The Wolfpack took better care of the basketball in the second half, but the team still couldn't stop the Seminoles. Florida State kept shooting the lights out, finishing the 51 percent from the field and just as good from 3-point land. The hot shooting kept the Pack from ever rallying a comeback.