The Wolfpacker

November 2019

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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86 ■ THE WOLFPACKER Quick Facts Junior guard Kai Crutchfield and the Wolfpack will look to knock off the defending ACC champion Fighting Irish Jan. 12 in South Bend. PHOTO BY KEN MARTIN Key Games • vs. North Carolina A&T, Nov. 6 The 2019-20 opener against the Aggies has the potential to be more than just a typical pushover. The Aggies compiled a 20-12 record last season, winning the Mid- Eastern Athletic Conference regular-season title with a perfect 16-0 league mark be- fore being upset in the MEAC Tournament semifinals by Norfolk State. Senior guard C'Coriea Foy, a first-team All-MEAC selection, leads a veteran group of five other seniors. History is on the Pack's side — NC State is 5-0 all time against the Aggies, who will be playing the Pack for the first time since 2007. • vs. Maryland, Dec. 5 This year's ACC/Big Ten Challenge will be a major test for the Pack considering Maryland is ranked as high as No. 4 in one preseason poll, with a recruiting class that was rated No. 1 in the country by espnW. The Terrapins (29-5 last year) were the Big Ten regular-season champs and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament as a No. 3 seed before being upset 85-80 by sixth-seeded UCLA. Honorable mention All-American junior forward Kaila Charles leads the Terps, with freshman guard Diamond Miller — a USA U-19 National Team selection — among five five-star recruits arriving this fall. The nationally televised game (ESPN) will be at Reynolds Coliseum. • at Notre Dame, Jan. 12 The defending ACC champion Irish, who finished first and second in the last two NCAA Tournaments, face a major rebuild- ing job this season after losing all five start- ers from last year's 35-4 national runner-up squad. Junior forward Mikayla Vaughn is the most prominent returner for ND, and the Pack will see one more familiar face in senior guard Destinee Walker, who trans- ferred from North Carolina. For the first time since the Irish joined the ACC, NC State was ranked ahead of Notre Dame in one national preseason poll (ninth to the Irish's 10th by Athlon). • vs. Louisville, Feb. 13 The Cardinals have been the Pack's major nemesis in the last two ACC Tour- naments, eliminating NCSU both years in the semifinals. Asia Durr, who torched NC State with 47 points in last February's 30-point blowout in Louisville (92-62), was one of three Cards taken in the WNBA Draft last spring. However, coach Jeff Woltz's cupboard received an unexpected restocking when 6-1 guard Elizabeth Balogun, last year's ACC Freshman of the Year, and 6-5 for- ward Elizabeth Dixon transferred from Georgia Tech following the firing of head coach MaChelle Joseph. Balogun's 14.6 points per game led all ACC freshmen last year and was eighth in the nation among first-year players. Junior guard Dana Evans also returns for the Cards after scoring in double figures (10.4 points per game) last year. In the 2018-19 season, Louisville (32-4) advanced to the NCAA Tournament's Elite Eight before falling to Connecticut. Returning Leaders Points: Sophomore center Elissa Cunane (464, 13.6 per game) Rebounds: Cunane (213, 6.3 per game) Assists: Senior guard Aislinn Konig (128, 3.8 per game) Blocks: Cunane (28, 0.8 per game) Steals: Junior guard Kai Crutchfield (29, 0.9 per game) Three-pointers made: Konig (93, 2.7 per game) FG percentage: Cunane (.549, 162 of 295) FT percentage: Redshirt senior guard Grace Hunter (.800; 48 of 60) Minutes: Konig (1,225, 36.0 per game) The Key Names, Games And Numbers To Know About The 2019-20 Women's Team BASKETBALL PREVIEW 2019-20

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