RALEIGH — The seating capacity at Reynolds Coliseum has been reduced, but the noise level at the Old Barn held steady in N.C. States 80-63 win over Cleveland State.
The announced sellout crowd of 7,234 gave the Wolfpack a boost on several occasions in Saturdays win, notably during a dominant first half by the home team but also at the end of the game.
Forward Jordan Vandenbergs jumper from the foul line with 1 minute, 25 seconds left in the game and then walk-on Chase Cannons 3-pointer with 52 seconds left raised the noise level at Reynolds to near its old standards.
The Pack improved to 14-0 at Reynolds since leaving its on-campus home for PNC Arena before the 1999-2000 season. N.C. State played at Reynolds from 1949 until the move to the off-campus arena next to the football stadium in west Raleigh.
I think its important for our fans, second-year coach Mark Gottfried said. It kind of brings them back here and means a lot to people. And its fun, too, with the crowd and how close they are to the floor.
Twice in the first half, N.C. State got the crowd roaring with a pair of hustle plays. Rodney Purvis blocked a layup attempt by Tim Kamczyc at 6:15, which led to a Richard Howell layup.
Three minutes later, a save of a defensive rebound by C.J. Leslie, which Lorenzo Brown turned into two points in transition, brought the crowd to its feet.
I kind of like it more because everybody is more on top of you, Howell said. I feel like the crowd is more involved with the game rather than when we play at the PNC.
The capacity for Reynolds when the mens team played here was 12,400 but it has been reduced to 8,650 for the womens team, with seating in both end zones moved closer to the court.
Another tough assignment: Point guard Lorenzo Brown has had his hands full on defense during the nonconference schedule. Cleveland States Charlie Lee was no exception on Saturday. Lee leads the Vikings in scoring (15.8 points per game) and assists (5.8 per game) and has had 20 points in three games this season.
Lee finished Saturdays game with 15 points, on 14 shots, but also had eight turnovers to three assists.
Brown and Lee exchanged verbal jabs several times during the game.
Thats what you do in basketball, Brown said. Youve got to talk back and forth. If somebody says something to you, you have to say something back. It was fun.
Brown finished the game with 10 points, six assists, one turnover and two steals.
Whoever gets the win, thats the most important, Brown said.
No 3 for Wood: Senior guard Scott Wood was held without a 3-pointer for the first time this season and second time in the past 40 games. Junior forward C.J. Leslie did hit his first 3-pointer of the season (on two attempts) and the 12th of his career. He made four 3s last season.