Chatham Journal Newspaper

NC State Wolfpack falls to Virginia Tech, 85-75

Blacksburg, VA – The NC State men’s basketball team had its three-game win streak snapped Wednesday evening as the Pack fell to Virginia Tech, 85-75, inside Cassell Coliseum.

NC State basketball coach Kevin Keatts.
photo by Gene Galin

NC State falls to 16-8, 6-5 in the ACC with the loss, while Virginia Tech improves to 17-7, 6-5 in the ACC with the win.

The Pack trailed by 18 points early in the second half, but battled back to cut the deficit to six with over 10 minutes remaining in the game, but could get no closer.

Omer Yurtseven led NC State with 20 points, while Markell Johnson registered a double-double with 15 points and 10 assists. The 10 assists extend the sophomore’s double-digit assist streak to five games. Yurtseven and Johnson were the lone NC State players to reach double figures. Abdul-Malik Abu led the Pack with a game-high seven rebounds.

The game was back-and-forth for the opening 10 minutes with both teams exchanging the lead. A Torin Dorn jump shot with 8:50 left in the first half tied the game at 23, but Virginia Tech responded with a 12-0 run to take a 35-23 lead with 5:43 left in the half. The lead would grow to as many as 15 points before NC State cut it to 13, 47-34, at the break.

Yurtseven scored eight points in the first four minutes of the game, but picked up his second foul at the 15:24 mark of the first half.

In the second half, the Hokies extended the lead to 18, 55-37, with 17:22 to go, but the Pack would not quit as NC State responded with an 18-6 run over the next six-plus minutes to cut the deficit to 61-55. The Hokies scored the next six points to extend the lead back to 12 and despite another response from NC State to get within seven with 6:51 to play, Virginia Tech would not allow the Pack to get any closer.

Justin Robinson led the Hokies with a game-high 32 points on 11-of-17 shooting from the field. The 32 points are the most NC State has allowed an opponent to score this season.

NC State ended the game with a 34-27 advantage in rebounding, but Virginia Tech had a 56-30 points in the paint advantage.

The Pack returns to action Saturday afternoon as it looks for a season sweep of UNC-Chapel Hill when the two teams meet inside a sold-out PNC Arena at 2 p.m. The game will be televised on the ACC Network.