NCAA Basketball Predictions: North Carolina State vs Georgetown
Sunday, March 18, 2012
by Mike Stewart
Coming off back-to-back opening-round upsets in the NCAA tournament, Georgetown rolled past 14th-seeded Belmont 74-59.
North Carolina State, playing its first NCAA game since 2006, outscored sixth-seeded San Diego State by 20 points in the paint and pulled away in the second half to win 79-65. The winner will advance to the Sweet 16 to face either 10th-seeded Purdue or second-seeded Kansas.
Georgetown Hoyas (24-8): Jason Clark scored 21 points and the Hoyas shot 61 percent from the field against Belmont. Georgetown’s stifling defense allows an average of 59.2 points, and the Hoyas were simply too strong inside for the Bruins. The frontline of Hollis Thompson, Otto Porter and Henry Sims will receive a tougher test against the Wolfpack, which outrebounded San Diego State 38-29 on Friday. Sims averaged 21 points and 14 boards in two Big East tournament games, and had 15 points against Belmont. Porter came off the bench against the Bruins to contribute 16 points and eight rebounds, and the Hoyas outscored Belmont 44-20 in the paint.
North Carolina State Wolfpack (23-12): The Wolfpack are peaking at the right time with wins in five of their last six games. Their only loss during that stretch came in the ACC semifinals, when they fell 69-67 to North Carolina. Four North Carolina State players scored in double figures against San Diego State, and the Wolfpack cruised to victory while shooting 57 percent from the field. Forward C.J. Leslie has averaged 18.7 points and 9.7 rebounds over his past nine games, and 6-foot-8 forward Richard Howell had a game-high 22 points against the Aztecs. Scott Wood, the Wolfpack’s top outside threat, shot 41 percent from 3-point range to lead the ACC.
1. North Carolina State is 4-2 all-time against Georgetown, but the Hoyas won 82-67 when the teams last met on Nov. 21, 2010.
2. Georgetown is 15-2 when scoring at least 69 points.
3. The Wolfpack ranked third in the ACC in scoring offense at 73.6 points per game.
NCAA BASKETBALL PREDICTION: Hoyas 70, Wolfpack 62.
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