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Purvis, Pack make short work of Eagles

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RALEIGH Whatever N.C. State lacked in continuity on Wednesday night against Boston College, it made up for in variety.

Rodney Purvis scored in transition, Scott Wood made a bunch of 3-pointers and C.J. Leslie bounced back in the Wolfpack's 82-64 win over Boston College at PNC Arena.

N.C. State won its 20th game of the season, giving the Pack consecutive 20-win seasons for the first time since Herb Sendek's last three teams did it from 2004 to '06.

Purvis had scored a total of 16 points in the previous five games combined but poured in a season-best 21 against the Eagles on Wednesday. There's something about BC that brings out the best in the freshman guard. His previous season-best was 19 points in the win over the Eagles in January.

Purvis, who came off the bench for the third straight game, had his best scoring game in more than a month. Three of Purvis' first four field goals came in transition, including a dunk off a blocked shot by Leslie, 13 seconds after Purvis checked into the game for the first time.

Wood made five 3s, including an off-balance leaner to close the first half and one in transition to start the second half. Wood finished with 17 points and three steals.

Leslie, who was challenged by coach Mark Gottfried after last Saturday's loss at North Carolina, had a busy night against the Eagles with 10 points, nine rebounds and three blocked shots. Leslie, who had six turnovers against UNC, had only two in 29 minutes on Wednesday.

N.C. State improved to 9-6 in the ACC and is trying to play its way out of the Thursday's play-in round of the ACC tournament. With three games left, the Wolfpack needs to make up a game on either UNC or Virginia, both 9-5 in the ACC, in the loss column, to crack the top four of the conference standings.

The Eagles (12-16, 4-11) offered little resistance in the first 8 and half minutes of the game on Wednesday night. The Pack raced out to a 22-6 lead, with five early points from Purvis, and three-point play from Leslie on a dunk over forward Eddie Odio.

Just when it looked like BC, which lost at Duke last Sunday by 21 points, would check out, Lonnie Jackson (16 points) kept the Eagles afloat. Jackson had 11 points in the first half, with three 3-pointers. His 3 with 39.8 seconds left in the half cut the Pack's margin to 30-27.

On State's last possession of the half, Odio actually blocked Wood's first 3-point attempt but Wood gathered the rebound and then leaned towards the basket, and away from Odio, for a 3-pointer with 1 second left in the half.

The Eagles stayed within shouting distance in the first 5 minutes of the second half but N.C. State's scoring power was just too much. A steal by Wood, and subsequent feed to Purvis on the fast break, started a 22-9 spurt by the Wolfpack.

Purvis' give-and-go with Lorenzo Brown (six assists) put the Pack up 45-34 at 14:23. By the time Leslie hit a 15-foot jumper seven minutes later, N.C. State's lead was 63-43.

Gottfried was able to empty his bench in rare easy ACC win. It was the Pack's third double-digit win in conference play. The crowd chanted for Jay Lewis and Chase Cannon, and both got to play the final 2 minutes.

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I Did not see

much of this game but my review of the box score indicated a good team effort got us a convincing win.

Rodney had not played well offensively recently but he has stayed positive and did not sulk, so I was really glad that he had a great night---I love his enthusiasm for the game. Didn't think Brown had a particularly good game, too many TO's, and we still are missing foul shots, but overall a good win.

At this point I am still hoping for a positive finish (12-6) to an up and down year, but I think 11-7 is more likely.

Alrighty then.

Good win for the Pack. Yes, it was BC, but they took care of business:

1. Welcome back Rodney. I could see this coming, just wasn't sure when. Whether you start or not, you can contribute big time. Great work.

2. Scott was outstanding, again. He is playing like a man on a mission. I expect this to continue for as long as the Pack stays alive.

3. Solid performances by Lorenzo, Richard, and CJ. Scoring was off a little for each of them, but they all made important contributions.

4. Nice recovery by TJ in the second half. His foul trouble resulted from freshmen mistakes, but he didn't hang his head and he came back strong. One more sign of his growing maturity.

5. Good to see Tyler get decent minutes. 5 assists in 16 minutes not bad. The dumbest broadcast comment of the night was the reference to Tyler matching his points-per-game average at 3. That is a very misleading stat, given the way he has played lately.

Good team win. On to Ga Tech. One game at a time.

Go Pack!

Lot of fun

I know it was BC but we don't get to enjoy these very often. Hated to see the BC run in the first half, but loved the effort in the second half. More than that, playing tough team defense and unselfish offense for 35 of 40 minutes got us a blowout against BC. Winning the next three, even against lower seeded teams, would do lot for this team's attitude and our seeding. Learning to play hard for 40 minutes will get us a chance to beat teams seeded higher than us. steve'73

40 minutes

I think that they know how to play hard for 40 minutes, they just have a hard time physically doing it.

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About the blogger

Joe Giglio covers the ACC for the News & Observer, where he has worked since 1997.
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