Gameday: NC State vs. Virginia

After shocking No. 7 seed Duke, No. 10 seed NC State now looks to pull off a bigger upset against No. 2 seed Virginia. Tip-off is set for 7:00, and the game will be televised on RLF/ESPN2.

Location: St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Florida

Tip-Off: 7:00 p.m.

Television: RLF/ESPN2

Radio: Airtime begins @ 6:30PM on the Wolfpack Radio Network

NC State Information

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    Virginia Information

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    NC State Projected Starting Line-up
    G- 04 Courtney Fells
    G- 11 Gavin Grant
    G- 14 Engin Atsur
    F- 33 Brandon Costner
    C- 34 Ben McCauley

    Virginia Projected Starting Line-up
    F- 24 Mamadi Diane
    F- 30 Adrian Joseph
    C- 33 Jason Cain
    G- 02 J.R. Reynolds
    G- 44 Sean Singletary

    Players to Watch
    NC State
    Engin Atsur --
    Atsur remains the key for the Wolfpack, as he has to keep Singletary under control.

    Virginia
    Sean Singletary - Singletary is the key cog in UVA's offensive attack. The junior point guard was recently named first-team All-ACC and he would have been a good choice for ACC Player of the Year honors.

    NC STATE GAME NOTES
    NOTING THE PACK

  • NC State has not been the lower seed in its opening game in the ACC Tournament since 2001, when seventh-seeded NC State played second- seeded Duke in the quarterfinals (L, 61-76 in Atlanta).
  • NC State's five starters have averaged in double figures throughout the season. If the averages continued to hold by season's end, it will mark the first time since 1977-78 that five players have averaged double figures for NC State.
  • NC State's conference opponents posted the best league record of any other league team's opposition, .539.
  • Brandon Costner was named to the ACC All-Freshman taem after setting a new freshmen scoring record this season with 474 thus far, his 217 rebounds are third-best.
  • Senior Engin Atsür is the 39th player in school history to reach the 1,000-point mark. He now has 1,100 points for his career - the 11th-best mark among current ACC players.

    NC STATE IN THE ACC TOURNAMENT
    NC State has played 100 games in the ACC Tournament and enters the 54th annual ACC Tournament with a 58-43 (.574) all-time mark in the event, which dates back to 1954. The Pack is the third-winningest team in tournament history (behind North Carolina and Duke) and ranks third in tournament titles with 10.

    THE PACK AS THE 10th SEED
    It's never happened! Prior to last season, the league never had more than 10 teams playing in the conference tournament.

    NC STATE VERSUS VIRGINIA
    NC State holds a 78-53 advantage in the all-time series with Virginia, which dates back to the 1912-13 season. The Wolfpack dropped both contests earlier this season - including Virginia's first ACC game in the new Jones Arena. The two teams have met 13 times in ACC Tournament action, with the Wolfpack posting an 11-2 advantage.

    SIDNEY LOWE IN THE ACC TOURNAMENT
    Although Thursday's first-round game against Duke will mark Sidney Lowe's first game as a coach in the ACC Tournament, Lowe is no stranger to the league's big party.

    The Wolfpack's first-year head coach played in seven ACC Tournament games during his years in the red and white, with the Wolfpack posting a 4-3 record in those games.

    His most memorable ACC Tournament was certainly his last, as the Wolfpack defeated fifth-seeded Wake Forest, top-seeded UNC in overtime and second-seeded Virginia to advance to the NCAA Tournament and the eventual national title. A senior on that squad, Lowe scored a career-high 26 points in the win over UNC, while playing 44 minutes. For his career, he averaged 10.3 points in his seven ACC Tourney contests.

    PACK LACKS EXPERIENCE IN THE ACC TOURNAMENT
    Only four current Wolfpack players have ever seen action in an ACC Tournament, and two of the four have played in just one league tourney game and for just one minute each!

    Senior Engin Atsür and junior Gavin Grant are the only players who have played in multiple games in the ACC tourney.

    Atsür has started all six that he has played in, while Grant has played in four, starting one.

    SHOOT WELL, WIN GAMES
    It's a pretty simple formula, but an obvious one for Sidney Lowe's team in 2006-07. In the Wolfpack's 15 wins this season, the team is shooting .534 from the field (416-779). In the 14 losses, that mark slips to .435 (320-735).

    The Pack is scoring 14.7 more points in wins (78.3) than in losses (63.6). Those marks are even more striking in the Wolfpack's games against ACC opponents.

    In its five league victories, NC State has shot a blazing .584 on field goals (143-245), but stands at just .418 (240-574) in its 11 league losses.

    NC State has shot so well in its wins this season that it ranks third in the league in shooting percentage at .486 heading into the league tournament.

    VIRGINIA GAME NOTES
    THE GAME
    Virginia enters the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament as the No. 2 seed after posting a 20-9 record in the regular season and an 11-5 mark in the ACC. The Cavaliers, who are ranked 24th in the ESPN/USAToday Top 25 Poll, are coming off a 78-72 loss to Wake Forest (March 3) in Winston-Salem.

    UVa will play the No. 10 seed NC State. NC State concluded the regular season with a 15-14 overall record and was 5-11 in the ACC. The Wolfpack is now 16-14 after defeating Duke 85-80 in the first round last night.

    TELEVISION
    Tonight's game will be televised by ESPN2 and the Raycom-Lincoln Financial Network. For ESPN2, Brad Nessler will handle the play-by-play, Jimmy Dykes in the analyst and Doris Burke is the sideline reporter. For RLF, Steve Martin will handle the play-by-play and Mike Gminski is the analyst. RADIO
    All UVa games are heard on the Virginia Sports Network originating at the Charlottesville Radio Group and WINA-AM/WWWV-FM in Charlottesville. Mac McDonald calls the play-by-play. Jim Hobgood provides the analysis.

    ACC TOURNAMENT HISTORY
    Virginia has won its opening round game in the ACC Tournament the last three seasons after losing its first game in the tournament the previous eight years. Last season, seventh-seeded UVa defeated 10th-seeded Virginia Tech 60-56 (Mar. 9) in the first round at the Greensboro Coliseum. Virginia lost to second-seeded North Carolina 79-67 (Mar. 10) in the quarterfinals.

    UVa is 30-52 (.366 winning percentage) all-time in the ACC Tournament.

    Virginia has been the second seed in the ACC Tournament two previous times and the Cavaliers are 4-2 all-time as the second seed. UVa was the second seed in the 1982 and 1983 ACC Tournaments and advanced to the finals both times. In 1982, the Cavaliers defeated Clemson 56-54 and Wake Forest 51-49 in overtime before falling in the finals 47-45 to North Carolina. In 1983, Virginia opened the tourney with a 109-66 win over Duke and then defeated Georgia Tech 96-67 before dropping an 81-78 decision to NC State.

    ACC HONORS
    Sean Singletary has earned All-ACC First Team honors for the second consecutive season, while J.R. Reynolds has been tabbed second-team All-ACC after earning third-team honors in 2006. Dave Leitao has been named the ACC Coach of the Year.

    Singletary is the first UVa player to earn first-team all-league honors twice since Bryant Stith garnered the honor three consecutive years - 1990, 1991 and 1992. He is only the fifth Virginia player to be a first-team All-ACC selection more than once (Stith and Ralph Sampson - three times, Buzzy Wilkinson and Jeff Lamp - twice).

    Reynolds was the top vote-getter on the All-ACC Second Team. He is UVa's first selection to the second team since Travis Watson in 2003.

    It marks the first time Leitao has earned a coach of the year award. He is also the first UVa coach to capture the honor since Terry Holland in 1982. Holland was also ACC Coach of the Year in 1981. In 1972, Bill Gibson became UVa's first men's basketball ACC Coach of the Year.

    UVA VS. NC STATE IN ACC TOURNAMENT
    The Cavaliers have not faired well vs. NC State in the ACC Tournament.

    NC State is 11-2 all-time vs. the Cavaliers in the ACC Tournament. In quarterfinal action, UVa is 2-6 against NC State. The Wolfpack have won the last two matchups vs. Virginia in the ACC Tournament (2000 and 2002). The Cavaliers' last win over State in the ACC Tournament was in 1986 (a 64-62 victory) in the quarterfinals.

    PHOTO GALLERY

    Sean Singletary, J.R. Reynolds


    Mamadi Diane, Jason Cain


    Adrian Joseph, T.J. Soroye



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