, North Carolina (PressExposure) April 10, 2009 -- North Carolina State trailed for the first 30 minutes of the contest against the Maryland Terrapins on March 1st, at the RBC center, allowing the Terps to take the game at 71-60.
Greivis Vasquez led Maryland with 33 points, two shy of his season high, And 21 of those were scored in the second half. He shot 13 of 23 field goals and hit four three pointers. Coming into the game the Terrapins had only one victory in six in the ACC conference.
"He just controlled the whole game," Javier Gonzalez said. "That was it. We let him do whatever he wanted out there and he just controlled the whole game. That was it."
The scoring was tight for most of the first half, and at halftime N.C. State had closed the gap to 34-33, though Maryland led by nine points three times. Maryland sank six of 12 from the arc which contributed to an early lead.
Tracy Smith scored 19 points in the game, giving the Wolfpack the lead when he sank a three pointer with 9:15 left on the clock. It would be the only lead of the night. Javier Gonzalez gained 11 and Ben McCauley and Courtney Fell each added 10.
"We wanted to punch it inside and play basic inside-out basketball," said N.C. State coach Sidney Lowe. "The second half, we didn't do that enough. We did it some with Tracy, but overall we were a little more passive than I wanted us to be."
Smith and McCauley tried to use their size and bulk to score, but the lead didn't last for long. The Terps built back up an 8 point cushion at the end of the game, and taunting the North Carolina fans, Vasquez scored an uncontested three pointer at the buzzer, sending angry Wolfpack fans booing him as they left the stadium. "I should have never shot it," Vasquez said. "I apologize. But I was into the game, and I made it. It was kind of disrespectful to the fans. . . They have a great team and great fans, so I know they're going to be mad at me." Dave Neal, the only other player for Maryland to score in the double digits, added 11 points. Overall, the ball handling and the turnovers, 16 overall, were what lost the game for North Carolina State. According to the Washington's posts Terrapins Insider, eight of nine Terps who entered the game recorded a steal.
N.C. State had showed a marked improvement in ball handling, but against Maryland, the Wolfpack couldn't hold on to the ball. Many of the losses were because of steals but most were the result of sloppy ball handling.
"I haven't felt this way about a game in a while because we've been playing good basketball," said Lowe. "I'm disappointed. We weren't taking care of the ball. We were tentative on the perimeter. Tracy and Ben did a solid job for us, but we've got to have more than three guys playing."