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NC State seeking momentum vs. winless Detroit Mercy


There are some pretty solid feel-good elements for North Carolina State heading into the weekend.

The Wolfpack are trying to build momentum and should have a good shot at doing that against winless Detroit Mercy on Saturday afternoon in Raleigh, N.C.

“There are good vibes all around,” NC State guard Casey Morsell said. “We’re growing. We have a good feel for who we are and our identity but we’re not 100 percent where we want to be, but we’re building and growing every day.”

NC State (8-3) will be playing its final nonconference game.

Detroit Mercy (0-12) doesn’t have much going for it, though it wiped out a 15-point, second-half deficit to take a brief lead Thursday night against host Central Michigan before losing 75-63.

Not only are the Titans still searching for their first victory, they have a difficult turnaround. After losing Thursday night in Mount Pleasant, Mich., they have a scheduled tip-off about 40 hours later in Raleigh. They began the week on the West Coast.

Detroit Mercy coach Mike Davis is a long way from 2002, when he guided Indiana to the NCAA championship game. Adding to the team’s woes, leading scorer Jayden Stone (18.9 points per game) likely won’t play Saturday since going down with an ankle injury three minutes into Monday’s game at Loyola Marymount.

This will mark the Titans’ fourth matchup of the season with a power-conference team after losses to Cincinnati, Mississippi and Northwestern.

Meanwhile, NC State has tried to look at the positive side of some of its setbacks.

“All of our losses are from ranked-level teams which shows us that we’re right there,” Wolfpack guard DJ Horne said. “We just have to keep chipping away and working every day.”

This game with Detroit Mercy ought to fit well with the Wolfpack’s plans to play aggressive and pesky defense.

“When we are active, getting deflections, we’re getting in the passing lanes, and we’re getting some of our offense from our defense, it’s really good for us,” coach Kevin Keatts said. “We played so many guys (in defeating Saint Louis on Wednesday night). This is what I’m looking for, to wear people down.”

The Wolfpack are 6-0 in home games.

NC State leads 3-0 in the series with Detroit Mercy, with the most recent game in November 2019.

–Field Level Media

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