Brown-Turner vs wake Forest

NC State's Jakia Brown-Turner (11) drives by Wake Forest's Anaia Hoard (1) during the second half of N.C. State’s 79-65 victory over Wake Forest at Reynolds Coliseum in Raleigh, N.C., Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020.

The No. 2 NC State women’s basketball team will return to the court and play Virginia Tech in two upcoming games on Sunday, Jan. 24 and Thursday, Jan 28. 

These will be the first games for the Wolfpack (10-0, 5-0 ACC) since Jan. 3 due to multiple games being postponed following positive COVID-19 tests within the program.

As the Pack has not played a game in three weeks, Virginia Tech (7-6, 2-6 ACC) will have the advantage having just played against Notre Dame on Jan 21. 

While the Hokies still have a winning record this season, they have struggled against ACC opponents, having only defeated UNC and Pittsburgh. Most recently, Virginia Tech lost 65-60 to Notre Dame, marking its second loss to the Fighting Irish in 2020-2021. They also suffered losses to Wake Forest and Georgia Tech, two teams NC State was able to defeat earlier this year. 

Offensively, the Hokies are led by senior guard Aisha Sheppard and sophomore center Elizabeth Kitley. Sheppard averages 18.5 points per game, including 29 in the recent loss to Notre Dame. Kitley is just behind her, averaging 17.5 points per game, plus a team-leading 11.8 rebounds a game. 

Kitley also makes up a large part of Virginia Tech’s defense along with redshirt senior forward Asiah Jones. With 28 so far this season, Kitley leads the team in blocks, but Jones is right behind her with 25, 21 more than anyone else on the team. 

While Virginia Tech was prepared with a strong starting lineup against Notre Dame, it just couldn’t stop the Fighting Irish once they took the lead in the second quarter. If the Pack can work to control Sheppard and Kitley, it has a definite chance of extending its win streak to 12-0 this upcoming week.

The Pack is currently led by junior center Elissa Cunane, who averages 16.2 points per game and leads the team with 14 blocks, as well as sophomore wing Jakia Brown-Turner, who averages 13.7 points. 

These are two very important matchups for the Wolfpack as it’s the last test before it plays No. 1 Louisville. 

Sunday’s game will tip off in Raleigh at 4 p.m. It will be aired on the ACC Network, and you can follow @TechSports on Twitter for live updates. NC State will then travel up to Blacksburg, Virginia on Thursday for another 4 p.m. tipoff.

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I’m Rachel Umbach, a communication media major in the class of 2023. I joined the Technician in the fall of 2019.