NCAA Tournament: Cardinals prove to be Elite in 10 point win over NC State


For those tired of the state of Kentucky having essentially a stranglehold on the Division 1 level of college basketball were none too pleased during the closing minutes of tonight’s second Sweet Sixteen matchup, when the Louisville Cardinals got revenge over the NC State Wolfpack to keep their dreams of an NCAA Tournament championship alive.

Louisville Cardinals
Louisville Cardinals /

Louisville Cardinals

The Cardinals came out of the gate with momentum, and established a huge presence (literally) down low from the seemingly very get go, and that trend continued for the rest of the game. Early on, the Cards forced the Pack to get things going from distance, and with over half of the first 20 minutes gone by, NCST had only mustered a pair of shots from inside the paint.

But, that plan backfired down the stretch in the first half, as not only did State get some shots to fall, but were also able to work their way inside and take a two point lead into halftime.

The second half couldn’t have started worse for the Cards, as NC State opened the back 20 minutes with a couple of quick threes to have the Cards trail by eight. But, from there, the Cards took over and went on a 16-2 run to take a 47-41 lead, and aside from a one-point lead by the Pack with 6:23 to play, the Cardinals would lead for the remainder of the game en route to the 10 point victory.

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The Cardinals got production where they needed it the most – from their starting five. With the exception of three points from Mangok Mathiang, every Card starter scored in double figures, while holding NC State to just two 10+ scoring starters, as well as a double-figure effort from the bench.

Big man Montrezl Harrell lead all scorers with 24 points while it was a guard in Terry Rozier to lead all players in rebounds with 14. The Cards dynamic duo proved to combine for enough firepower to bring the season to an end for NC State.

Up next, the Cardinals will take on the winner of tonight’s Michigan State/Oklahoma game in the Elite Eight on Sunday.