The Wolfpacker

July-August 2022

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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Page 41 of 59

42 ■ THE WOLFPACKER BY MATT CARTER ew NC State athletic teams provided the type of last- ing memories that the 2021 Wolfpack football squad gave Wolfpack fans. The Pack ended an eight- game losing streak to na- tional powerhouse Clemson by prevail- ing in double overtime, overcoming a missed field goal at the end of regula- tion to send students and fans swarming onto the turf at Carter-Finley Stadium. NC State rallied from down two scores at 30-21 with less than two minutes left to stun archrival North Carolina in the regular season finale, 34-30. That win also sparked a rush of the field, celebrating an undefeated home season, the first for the football team since 1986 — 35 years earlier. The Wolfpack finished 9-3 over- all, including 6-2 in the ACC, and was ranked No. 20 in the Associated Press and No. 19 in the USA Today coaches poll. Those were the highest postseason rankings for NC State since the beloved 2002 11-win Pack team that stomped Notre Dame in the Gator Bowl finished 12th in the final edition of the AP poll. This Wolfpack team also had a chance to equal that 2002 squad in giving NC State its second-ever double-digit winning season. Slightly favored in the San Diego County Credit Union Holi- day Bowl against UCLA, the Wolfpack had to settle for coming home with the bowl trophy after the Bruins withdrew A SEASON TO REMEMBER Euphoric Victories Highlight A Stellar Year For The Wolfpack MALE TEAM OF THE YEAR FOOTBALL F NC State was unbeatable at home last year, going 7-0 at Carter-Finley Stadium. It was the first time since 1986 that the Wolfpack compiled a perfect home record. PHOTO BY KEN MARTIN

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