The Wolfpacker

March 2018

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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16 ■ THE WOLFPACKER TRACKING THE PACK "Everyone says NC State is a blue-collar atmosphere and a blue-collar school. I think I fit that." — NC State sophomore Will Wilson, who is making the move from second base to shortstop this season (The Technician) "I'm living a dream. I didn't ask for this. I couldn't have imagined this. I just knew I was going to be playing in the ACC. For us to be doing what we're doing now, it's a dream, but we've got to finish strong." — NC State fifth-year senior shooting guard Sam Hunt, who was a graduate transfer from North Carolina A&T (The Raleigh News & Observer) "This team has a different vibe to it, shaking off all kinds of NC State bugaboos that have transcended eras and coaching regimes — just about everything other than fouling with a lead, which seems to be unshakable." — Columnist Luke DeCock on the Wolfpack's success in men's basketball this season (The Raleigh News & Observer) "I told you guys this group was in uncharted waters when we got to six [ACC] wins. Now it's getting deeper and deeper [nine league victories]." — NC State men's basketball head coach Kevin Keatts on the conference success for the program this season after its home win over Boston College on Feb. 20 (The Fayetteville Observer) "The Wolfpack look to build off a nine-win season, their best since 2010, and they'll do so with the luxury of two-year starter Ryan Finley. Finley chose to bypass the NFL Draft despite a career season, one in which he passed for a career-high 3,518 yards and 17 touchdowns. However, outside of Finley, NC State doesn't have much in the form of experience on the roster." — Reporter Matt Murschel on predicting that NC State will have the second-best quarterback group in the ACC next year (The Orlando Sentinel) "You can't give a number like that in basketball [NCSU women's team leading the nation in defensive rebounding percentage], men or women, unless you explain what it means — I have to give you the 'why.' These stats, it helps grow our game — it makes NC State look good, it makes [coach] Wes Moore look good. … We didn't have this in the women's game, and we needed it." — Former NC State player turned broadcaster Deb- bie Antonelli on how has brought analytics into women's basketball (USA Today) "I've grown some patience from last year into this year kind of being in the same situ- ation. I know what to expect now, being here early and probably staying late. I'm not too worried, not getting too frustrated, [and I'm] rolling with the punches." — Former NC State pitcher Carlos Rodon of the Chicago White Sox on what he has learned while going through shoulder rehabilitation (The Chicago Tribune) PHOTO BY KEN MARTIIN QUOTING THE PACK Joshua Davis, Track & Field The All-American cemented himself as a national title contender when he won the weight throw at the ACC Indoor Champion- ships Feb. 23 in Clemson, S.C. The fifth-year senior from Pelham, N.C., set a new conference record with his throw of 78 feet and 2.25 inches, which was also the top mark in the country for this season at the time. The performance made just him the ninth collegiate ath - lete ever to surpass 78 feet and earned him USTFCCCA National Athlete of the Week honors for the second time this year. Alexis Galarneau, Tennis The Wolfpack, in year one under head coach Kyle Spencer, had climbed to No. 19 in the national team rankings thanks in large part to Galarneau. The sopho- more from Laval, Canada, has gone 6-1 at No. 1 singles in dual action through Feb. 26 and risen to No. 16 in the singles rankings. He has wins over No. 35 Stefan Milicevic of Min- nesota and No. 76 Aziz Kijametovic of Old Dominion to his credit. Galarneau has led NC State to its first top-25 ranking since 2016. Elly Henes, Track & Field The sophomore from Cary, N.C., captured the first individual league title of her career by winning the 3,000-meter race at the ACC Indoor Championships Feb. 24 in Clemson, S.C. Henes finished the distance in 9:18.67. Among those she defeated was her teammate and senior Erika Kemp, who won the same race at the conference meet a year ago. Henes was an All-American in cross country in the fall, helping the women's team finish in eighth place at the national meet. Hayden Hidlay, Wrestling The redshirt freshman from Lewiston, Pa., could be the next in line of a string of great wres - tlers to have come through NC State. Hidlay entered the ACC Tournament with a 20-0 record, including five vic- tories over ranked opponents, most notably a 3-1 decision over then-No. 2 Joey Lavallee from Missouri Dec. 17. As of Feb. 19, Hidlay was the third-ranked 157-pounder in the country, according to He was one of just two undefeated freshman wrestlers in the country at the time. Brett Kinneman, Baseball Nobody in the country was swinging a better bat to start the 2018 baseball season than the junior outfielder from York, Pa. Through Feb. 26 and nine games played (during which NC State was 8-1), Kinneman was hitting .487 (19 of 39) with 11 runs scored, seven home runs and 23 RBI. He was leading the country at the time in hits, home runs and RBI. Not sur - prisingly, he was named the College Baseball News National Player of the Week Feb. 26. ■ PACK PERFORMERS "It means everything to me. I want to go far. I want to play in the tournament again, survive and advance. It's just the little things every day that lead up to that." — NC State senior power forward Abdul-Malik Abu on trying to reach the NCAA Tournament (The Raleigh News & Observer)

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