The No. 8 seed NC State Wolfpack shook off a mid-season lull to win five out of their last seven games, including two victories in the ACC Tournament, and they hope to keep that momentum going in the second round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament on Friday against the No. 9 seed Temple Owls.
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The Wolfpack weathered a strong schedule to finish with a 24-10 record, which includes victories over Duke and North Carolina. Temple had a similarly difficult slate, and arguably has better wins on its resume, coming out on the plus side in games against Syracuse, St. Louis, La Salle and VCU.
NC State is led by C.J. Leslie, who averages 14.9 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. Leslie scored in double-figures in all but four games over the course of the season, including a 25-point effort in a win over Duke on Jan. 12. Leslie has a good supporting cast, particularly in big man Richard Howell, who averages 12.7 points and 10.7 rebounds per contest. Howell, the nation's fifth-leading rebounder, had a big game of his own against the Blue Devils on Jan. 12, finishing with 16 points and 18 boards.
Temple has an elite scorer in Khalif Wyatt. Wyatt led the Atlantic 10 in scoring at 19.8 points per game. In his last six games against NCAA Tournament teams, Wyatt scored 25.3 points per contest. Like Leslie, Wyatt has a productive big man helping his cause, as 6'9, 230-pound sophomore Anthony Lee averages 10.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game.
Game time, TV: 1:40 p.m. ET, TBS
Location: University of Dayton Arena, Dayton, Ohio