Broncos Outgunned on Road, Fall at #23/25 NC State
The Broncos and Wolfpack were tight throughout much of the first half, and were even as late as the 4:10 mark of the first, when Austin Richie scored on a fast break lay-up to make it 32-32. WMU trailed by just seven points at the halftime break, but the Wolfpack unleashed a run early in the second half to pull away and seal the victory.
Freshman Darius Paul recorded his third double-double of the season, posting 12 points and 10 rebounds in 34 minutes of play, and Nate Hutcheson led all Broncos with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the field. Shayne Whittington had his third straight double-digit scoring effort, posting 14 points and grabbing nine rebounds.
The Broncos opened the game on a 5-0 run, with Paul opening proceedings with a lay-up and Brandon Pokley drilling a three-pointer from the corner at the 18:59 mark of the half. The Wolfpack pulled even and eventually took the lead at 10-8, but Hutcheson drained a pair of free throws with 15:58 remaining to pull the score even again. NC State led by as many as eight points in the half, but Hutcheson converted an "and-one" situation to make it 18-3, and Whittington hit 15-foot jumper at the 13:10 mark to cut the lead to three points.
Whittington completely eliminated the deficit on the very next possession, grabbing a defensive rebounds and knocking down a three-pointer from beyond the head of the key to tie the game at 18-18. WMU re-took the lead when Taylor Perry added a pair of free throw makes with 11:20 to play, and the lead reached as many as three points when Connar Tava made a lay-up at the 9:33 mark to make it 24-21. The last tie in the half and ultimately the game came with 4:10 remaining, with Richie making lay-ups on consecutive possessions to tie it at 32.
The beginning of the second half was all Wolfpack, for the most part, as NC State opened up the lead on the Broncos. The closest the Broncos would get the rest of the way was eight points, when Whittington scoring on an offensive rebound and tip-in to make it 50-42 with 14:00 remaining. The Wolfpack led by as many as 21 points the rest of the way, but the Broncos cut the final deficit to 16 points on a putback from Paul as time expired.