Thursday, January 31, 2008

Liveblog! NC State @ Duke -- First Half

[8:58PM] Carolina just put the finishing touches on its blowout of Boston College. John Edwards looked mighty pleased--and quite sharp in those traitorous colors.

Over on ESPN2, Providence has been playing this guy named Ray Hall, and he doesn't look a day under 35. Can't find a good photo, unfortunately.

[9:04PM] I've never been happier for the ESPN blackout. My night will be Mike Patrick free, so there's that, at least. And I totally understand why Billy Packer's cantankery bothers people, but I have to say, it just wouldn't seem like ACC basketball without him.

You guys can help me hand out ScreamoK's when Duke players display exemplary hustle.

"Break that asshole's nose, yeah! WOOOOOOO!"

[9:07PM] Yes, sir! We go right inside and get a basket. Henderson ties it quickly, and now we get to bring it up the full court for the first time. Ben freakin' McCauley is dribbling it up for some reason, and whaddya know, it's a turnover.

[9:09PM] Two turnovers in three possessions. The decision to give them the ball every time down is a bold one--let's see if it pays off for us.

The entire extent of Greg Paulus's "defense" is hand checking.

[9:10PM] Four turnovers in three minutes. I really did not see this coming at all.

[9:12PM] Javi's in after the early unpleasantness. Hickson is fouled by McClure, McClure receives congratulatory man hug from Singler. For whatever reason. Yeah, way to get yourself on the stat sheet, man!

[9:14PM] Good help D by Duke forces Ben to go to his left hand, which does not work out so well.

[9:17PM] BC enters for the first time. We'll see how this goes.

Jesus, Hickson missed like three attempts from two feet. Looked like he was hit on the first one. But we are grabbin' some offensive boards here early.

Great finish by Javi! Didn't know he had that in him.

[9:19PM] Figures. Fells misses a dunk and Duke immediately turns that mistake into a bucket.

Costner hits a three, his first attempt of the game. Good show.

[9:22PM] "Loafin' on Grant's part." -- Packer. Our transition defense is horrible.

[9:25PM] King hits the deck, Gavin gets and hits a wide open three. Eight minutes in, only down a point. Although this is about the time it went south in Chapel Hill.

King, way to scrap, son. You're a grinder. That's a ScreamoK.

[9:27PM] Dammit, there's an offensive board and a score by Thomas, who immediately commits a foul at the defensive end. We can't just hold our own on the glass tonight, we've got to dominate to have a shot.

[9:30PM] Paulus fouls Fells at Duke's offensive end, no call, but we got control of the basketball anyway. Gavin takes it to the rim and gets the call.

Duke's not setting the world on fire from the field so far, which is nice--and there's Gavin with another three!

[9:32PM] Marques just ain't ready for this. And good lord, Gavin has the ball swiped as he's dribbling in the back court. How large is the turnover margin at this point? And we're winning?

[9:33PM] Gavin puts us up four, and we have a Lance Thomas field goal attempt. You take all those you want, Lance.

Great take by JJ. Wow.

[9:35PM] Big Ben joins the party. DeMarcus Nelson dribbles the ball off his foot out of bounds, taking us to the TV timeout. We need like 12 of those, DeMarcus. 'Preciate it.

[9:38PM] Gavin. Fuckin'. Grant.

[9:39PM] Oh, good, an unnecessary delay. This is what we need.

[9:41PM] Let the foul parade begin! You are such a vagina, Paulus.

McClure flops big time--horrible call. But totally expected. ScreamoK.

[9:43PM] These last five minutes will take a good half hour, with Duke getting two FTs every time down. Unbelievable--you want to know how Paulus "earns" those five second calls (and I'm not sure that was one)? Cheating! Call a goddamn foul.

[9:45PM] Paulus fouls Costner hard, BC takes exception. We have got to get Gavin back in the game for Horner, who, by the way, now has the worst net +/- number on the team.

[9:49PM] BC hits 'em both. Four point lead. DeMarcus Nelson drives around Simon Harris, gets fouled. I look forward to our inevitable and crippling foul trouble.

[9:50PM] Did you see Costner bank in that three, nonchalant-style, after Thomas fouled him? Maybe that's an omen.

[9:52PM] Singler hits the floor but is awarded no credit after fouling Costner behind the three point line. I hope everyone likes free throws.

[9:54PM] Costner hits a pair and that's 40 (!) in the first half for the Wolfpack. Holy shit.

[9:55PM] Duke has a handful of white boys, and they all pretty much have the same buzz haircut. How much trouble do you think Mike Patrick is having distinguishing them right now? He's not even front and center; this being Cameron, he's way up in the rafters. He probably can't even read the scoreboard.

[9:56PM] Renewed effort from Duke on the offensive glass after that timeout.

[9:57PM] That McCauley shot sat on the rim forever. Thought for sure we'd get a flop from Paulus on that one.

[10:01PM] Oh man. Ha. Nice layup try there, Greg. You're so talented.

Pack 46, Duke 37 at the half. Forty-six points!

[10:32PM] And we're back. I'm so sorry.

[10:33PM] We have got to get some stops. Scheyer drives right past Dennis Horner again, and that's Dennis's third foul.

[10:36PM] Paulus goes out. Thank god.

Horner is way off on a three, and we're officially in the danger zone.

[10:37PM] Shots aren't falling anymore. And I agree with Billy--we need to get Hickson back in the game and not concern ourselves with foul trouble.

[10:40PM] Hickson gets the ball, forces it. Have to stay patient, fellas.

[10:41PM] Fells gets pushed, which of course means he traveled. Uh huh. Yep.

Duke's hitting everything.

[10:42PM] Lance Thomas, foul machine. It is barely possible to suck more than he sucks. But Hickson misses the front end...

[10:45PM] Well, guys, I'm afraid it's slipped away. Duke is getting open shots every time down and they are not missing. Why did I let myself get so excited after that first half?

[10:48PM] It doesn't seem like Duke has missed a shot this half.

[10:54PM] Eleven points is the deficit, seven minutes left. K is complaining about something, and he absolutely has the right to complain about things, because, dude, it's just so unfair.

[10:56PM] Nelson is fouled by Grant, extends the lead back to 11. Whatever, I'm over it. (I'm not actually over it.)

[10:59PM] Lance Thomas fouls out. In the huddle, he points a finger at Singler and attempts, I don't know, leadership or something. I'm sure you have his complete respect, Lance.

[11:01PM] 84-67. Honestly, how did this happen?

[11:10PM] Jordan Davidson.

[11:12PM] Thanks for hanging out tonight. I should not feel this depressed.