NC State

NC State falls to Creighton 112-94 in Paradise Jam

N.C. State was able to run with No. 22 Creighton for one half but not two.

The Bluejays pulled away in the second half, with a prolific scoring effort, to hand the Wolfpack a 112-94 loss in the Paradise Jam tournament on Sunday night in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.

It is the second-most points N.C. State (3-1) has ever allowed in a basketball game.

N.C. State kept up with the deeper Bluejays in the first half, due to some incredible 3-point shooting, but the Wolfpack ran out of gas in the second half and Creighton ran away.

Forward Cole Huff was one of seven Creighton (4-0) players in double figures and led the way with 20 points. It was the most points an N.C. State team had allowed in 38 years.

Only Maryland, with 124 points in December 1978, has ever scored more points against a Wolfpack team.

The Bluejays used an early 8-0 run in the second half to break the game open after taking a 54-48 halftime lead.

Guard Khyri Thomas’ alley-oop to forward Justin Patton gave Creighton a 62-50 advantage at the 18:25 mark in the second half.

Creighton just kept running and running and outscored N.C. State, 58-46 in the second half. Thomas finished with 16 points and five assists.

Senior guard Terry Henderson equaled his career-high with 28 points to lead N.C. State, which again played without wing Maverick Rowan. Rowan has missed three straight games after suffering an apparent concussion in the season-opener with Georgia Southern on Nov. 11.

After making only nine 3-pointers in the first three games, N.C. State went 9-of-18 from the 3-point line in the first half. Henderson was 5-of-7 and had 17 of his points in the first 20 minutes.

But Creighton kept pace, shooting 55.5 percent from the floor in the first half and getting 14 points from Huff.

The two teams got a little chippy in the second half after Creighton extended its lead to double digits.

Creighton’s Marcus Foster and Justin Patton both got technical fouls for taunting in the second half.

But N.C. State couldn’t take advantage of either extra possession. The Bluejays worked the pick-and-roll perfectly for easy baskets in the lane with forwards BeeJay Anya and Abdul-Malik Abu both in foul trouble.

Creighton outscored N.C. State 52-26 in the paint.

N.C. State played without forward Ted Kapita for the second straight game and won’t have him for Monday’s 7 p.m. consolation game with Saint Joseph’s. Kapita did not make the trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands due to an issue with his student visa.

Forward Omer Yurtseven won’t be eligible until Dec. 15. The Wolfpack could have used either on Sunday against a strong Creighton team.

N.C. State finished 14-of-28 from beyond the 3-point line. Freshman guard Dennis Smith Jr. added 21 points and seven assists.

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