Raleigh, NC – Torin Dorn and Lennard Freeman each posted career-high point totals as NC State took down the Bryant Bulldogs, 95-72, Tuesday night at PNC Arena. NC State moves to 3-0 on the year in the program’s first season under head coach Kevin Keatts.
The Pack finished with five players scoring in double figures. Dorn led all scorers with 26 points to tie his career-high, shooting 11-of-14 from the field. Freeman was the Pack’s second-leading scorer, going 8-of-11 from the floor and 4-of-5 from the free throw line for 20 points. Allerik Freeman added 15 points for NC State, while Markell Johnson notched his first-career double-double with 10 points and a career-best 11 assists.
Darius Hicks also had a career night, scoring in double digits for the first time in his career. The sophomore from Quitman, Miss. put up 10 points while grabbing a career-high five rebounds.
The Pack yielded a season-best +20 turnover margin, forcing the Bulldogs into 27 turnovers for the game while giving the ball up just seven times. It was the third-consecutive game that NC State forced its opponent into 20 or more turnovers. Bryant’s 27 turnovers tied for the third-highest mark in a single game in PNC Arena history and are the most opponent turnovers forced by NC State in PNC Arena since November 22, 2002.
The Wolfpack totaled 14 steals on the night, including four from Lavar Batts, Jr. and three from Allerik Freeman.
Bryant started the game on fire, going 9-of-9 from the field and 3-of-3 from beyond the arc to open up a 21-10 lead on the Wolfpack. NC State answered with an 11-0 run over 1:09 to tie it, 21-21, on a layup by Braxton Beverly. The Pack took its first lead of the game on two-straight made free throws by Hicks and never trailed again.
Fifteen of Dorn’s points came in the first half as the Charlotte, N.C. native shot 6-of-7 from the field. Lennard Freeman added 11 points in the first 20 minutes on 5-of-5 shooting. Johnson continued his role as the offense’s facilitator with seven assists in the first period. The Pack headed to the locker room with 50-40 advantage over the Bulldogs.
NC State continued to build on its lead in the second half, paced by an efficient 11-point, five-rebound performance from Dorn over the final 20 minutes. Lennard Freeman added nine points for the half, while all five of Batts’ points came in the second frame. The true freshman drew three fouls and went 5-of-6 from the line.
Less than two hours prior to the game, NC State learned that freshman guard Braxton Beverly had his waiver for immediate eligibility granted. Beverly played 16 minutes in his NC State, finishing with two points, two rebounds, two steals and one assist.
Up next, the Pack will host its fourth home game in seven days against the Presbyterian Blue Hose as part of the Bad Boy Mowers Battle 4 Atlantis. Tipoff is scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. inside PNC Arena.