NCAA: NC State, Georgetown advance (updated)

In a closely contested battle, No. 11 North Carolina State was able to pull away in the second half and defeat No. 6 seed San Diego State 79-65 in a second round NCAA Tournament game in Nationwide Arena Friday.

Richard Howell scored 22 points to lead NC State, who shot 58 percent from the field on 31-of-53 from the field. Lorenzo Brown added 17 points and a game-high nine rebounds.  The Wolfpack outrebounded the Aztecs 38-29. Howell said his coach, Mark Gottfried, inspires the way he plays.

“The way he’s got confidence in me,” Howell said. “That’s what started it. I kept the confidence up. I wanted to win. I didn’t want it to be our last game.”

NC State will face No. 3 Georgetown, who defeated Belmont x-x, Sunday at Nationwide Arena.

The first half was back and forth with neither team holding a lead bigger than five points. The Wolfpack used an 8-3 run late to take a 33-29 lead at halftime. Howell had 15 of his 22 points in the first 20 minutes.

“I thought today inside around the basket we were able to get a lot done,” Gottfried said. “And I thought Richard in the first half was just sensational.”

NC State never relinquished the led in the second half, leading by as many as 11. The Aztecs got to within two points early in the half, but ran out of gas as the half went.

Jamaal Franklin led the Aztecs, who had to travel cross-country, with a game-high 23 points and eight rebounds. San Diego State shot 38 percent from the field on 23-of-61 shooting.

“We’re very disappointed and yet immensely proud of the season that we’ve had and the program that these young men have helped built and grow,” Aztec coach Steve Fisher said. “We got beat by a very good team who has been playing very, very good basketball.”


Jason Clark scored 21 points to lead No. 3 Georgetown past No. 14 Belmont in a third round NCAA Tournament game at Nationwide Arena. Otto Porter added 16 points and eight rebounds for the Hoyas, who shot 30-of-49 (61 percent) from the field and outrebounded the Bruins 30-22.

“Any win this time of year is a great win,” Hoyas coach John Thompson III said.  “And that’s a great win against a very good team, against a coach that’s one of the best.”

Belmont had early leads, including a 14-12 lead, but Georgetown scored the next nine points to create separation. The Bruins would get no closer than eight points the rest of the game and the Hoyas led by as many as 19 in the second half.

“We went in expecting to play both man and zone,” Thompson III said. “Once we settled into our zone, I thought it was very effective.  So we stayed with it, probably a lot longer than I had planned, probably longer than the game plan.”

Blake Jenkins led Belmont with 17 points, while Ian Clark added 12 points. The Bruins shot 21-of-54 from the field (39 percent).

“I felt like Georgetown was simply the better team pretty much from start to finish,” Belmont coach Rick Byrd said. “We chipped away, and we didn’t let them get out of striking range. They shot 61percent from the floor and they made 12 turnovers.  That’s a scary good offensive efficiency performance, and therefore pretty bad defensive efficiency number for Belmont.” / Twitter @DaveSeaman94


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