Wolfpack holds off Camels 87-81 at sold-out Reynolds Coliseum

Raleigh News and Observer photos

WRAL.COM photos

Fayetteville Observer: Bret Strelow

Raleigh News and Observer: Luke DeCock

Raleigh News and Observer: J.P. Giglio

RALEIGH, N.C. – NC State used a late 13-2 run and held off Campbell 87-81 Thursday night at Reynolds Coliseum.

Lorenzo Brown scored 24 points, including 14-of-16 at the line, and Richard Howell added 17 points and 17 rebounds for the Wolfpack (9-4), which won its third-straight game. Scott Wood added 16 and CJ Leslie 10 for State, which made 28-of-31 free throws (.903) and finished with a 40-22 edge on the glass.

Darren White scored 25 points – 18 in the second half – for the Camels (8-6), who dropped their fifth-straight contest.

The junior wing from Danville, Va., hit 9-of-11 from the floor, including 3-of-4 triples. Trey Freeman (7 assists, 0 turnovers) and Lorne Merthie (4-of-6 threes) added 15 points and Eric Griffin chipped in 14 plus 5 blocks. Marvelle Harris pulled down a season-high 9 rebounds.

Campbell shot 51 percent (29-57) from the field, 9-of-14 (.643) from 3-point range and 14-of-19 (.737) from the stripe.

"I'm really pleased with the effort I got from my kids," said Campbell head coach Robbie Laing. "Everybody that took the floor played with a high energy level. As difficult as this stretch has been, it's been very educational. When your team has to play every night at its maximum capacity, you get better."

Campbell led 56-54 with 13:10 remaining after Harris' dunk. But State responded with 8 unanswered points and led 62-56 after Wood hit two technical free throws with 11:32 remaining.

White's foul shots pulled the Camels within 66-63, but the Wolfpack answered with its decisive run and pushed the margin to 79-65 on Alex Johnson's transition lay-in with 5:48 to go.

Merthie, whose 15 points stand as a season-high, hit two free throws with 1:49 to play that capped a 9-2 Camel spurt. White's dunk with 7 seconds left provided the final margin.

Campbell hit 15-of-28 shots, including 6-of-8 threes and the score was deadlocked 41-41 at half time. The score was tied 7 times and the lead changed on 7 occasions in the first 20 minutes alone.

Freeman scored 11 first-half points and Griffin 10, while Merthie added 9 on 3-of-4 shooting beyond the arc.

Campbell hit 6 of its first 9 shots and led 18-13 when Anthony Horton hit a 3 from the right wing with 12:26 to play in the opening half.

Howell's free throws gave the Wolfpack a 37-32 lead with 3:28 to go, but the Camels reeled off a 9-2 run capped by Merthie's trey from right of the key to pull in front 41-39.

Notes:

NC State improved to 7-2 at home (3-0 at Reynolds Coliseum), losing only to Indiana and top-ranked Syracuse at the RBC Center.

The Camels own a 1-30 all-time record against current members of the Atlantic Coast Conference and have dropped their last 13 contests against ACC schools. CU's only victory over an ACC school came on Dec. 4, 1993 in overtime at NC State (72-69). Coach Robbie Laing's teams are 0-6 vs. the ACC in his 9 seasons, 0-2 vs. the Wolfpack

Campbell returns to Big South Conference action Monday when it hosts Coastal Carolina in a 7:45 p.m. tip-off at Gore Arena.