I attended NC State’s battle against Virginia Tuesday night and it was one of the most acceptable losses I can remember. Sure that sounds weird to say but the atmosphere is different in Raleigh and WPN is noticing.
Now “moral wins” are not something WPN needs to become accustomed to but what transpired against the #3 team in the nation was impressive to say the least. One fan stated that being down to UVA by 10 points is like being down by 20 points to any other team. That has to do with the mere pace UVA plays at.
Virginia is the most efficient team in the nation. And when you factor in their incredible defense, I would say the most difficult team in the country to beat. NC State got down by 14 points in the second half before climbing their way back into the game. Markell Johnson and Wyatt Walker sparked the Pack’s energy throughout the game. NC State had multiple opportunities to pull out the win when the game went into overtime but it really felt like Virginia was the team playing to survive.
As I left PNC Arena Tuesday night, there wasn’t booing. There wasn’t a hum tone of Pack fans groaning. Many State fans applauded the Pack’s performance. I believe in this particular case, WPN should be optimistic but not satisfied. With NC State’s largest margin of defeat this season at 8 points (UNC), I believe perseverance and grit remains Keatts’ team’s greatest attributes. NC State takes on #13 Virginia Tech Saturday afternoon. That’s a game all of WPN expects to win (and frankly) needs to.