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Clemson looks to ride momentum against Wolfpack

Toby Corriston
Clemson guard Chase Hunter is coming off his best game of the 2023-2024 season, scoring 20 points against Miami on Wednesday, Feb. 14.

With less than a month to go in the regular season, Clemson hosts NC State in an ACC matchup at Littlejohn Coliseum on Saturday at 7:45 p.m.

Clemson comes into the matchup looking to continue its three-game win streak. In the Tigers’ most recent game against Miami, Chase Hunter, PJ Hall and Joseph Girard III combined for 51 of the team’s 77 points, which included a 20-point performance by Hunter.

Earlier this season, after the Tigers lost to Miami, head coach Brad Brownell said he talked with his three veteran leaders.

“When you guys play poorly, we are probably going to lose,” Brownell said. “There is a responsibility to being the best players. They know that. It’s not any earth-shattering thing. But my point was like, you guys need to work together.”

The trio answered Brownell’s call, leading Clemson (17-7, 7-6 ACC) to several wins over the last few weeks. The combination of Hall’s presence in the paint, Girard’s shooting from deep and Hunter’s playmaking ability have proved to be difficult to stop for opposing teams.

With the season winding down, Hall, Hunter, and Girard will look to continue their unified play to keep the Tigers’ momentum going, starting in one of the final games of the year in Littlejohn Coliseum.

Littlejohn Coliseum’s atmosphere has caused problems for opponents the entire season. When the game is tight, teams have struggled from the roar of Clemson fans, as Brownell discussed on Wednesday following his team’s win over Miami.

“It’s amazing how that changes everything,” Brownell said. “Then the (opposing) offense, they’re trying to call out plays. They’re not sure they can hear them. It puts a little anxiety there and making the right play, and it sometimes causes a turnover or causes a bad shot, and then sometimes, the opposing coach, you call timeout.”

The Wolfpack (15-9, 7-6 ACC) look to come back from a two-game skid after they lost in a heartbreaking fashion to Wake Forest last Saturday. DJ Horne will lead the charge for NC State, coming off a 31-point performance in its loss to the Demon Deacons. Horne has averaged 16.8 points to go along with 3.4 rebounds and 2.5 assists.

Horne is complemented by Casey Morsell and Jayden Taylor; the trio of guards is responsible for the vast majority of the Wolfpack’s offense. In order to knock off the Tigers, the Wolfpack will have to play their best game and find a way to shut down Clemson’s high-powered offense.

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About the Contributors
Brett Porter, Senior Reporter
Toby Corriston, Asst. Photo Editor
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