Originally posted on Fox Sports Carolinas  |  Last updated 1/31/13
On the surface, its pretty easy to suggest the reason North Carolina State lost 58-55 at Virginia on Tuesday night was because it lost point guard Lorenzo Brown for the game with an ankle injury midway through the first half. After all, the junior playmaker has been the Wolfpacks best player and was off to a solid start against the Cavaliers. But even without Brown, the Wolfpack are more talented than Virginia, and with a McDonalds All-American serving as Browns backup, N.C. State still should have been in decent shape. But it wasnt. Tyler Lewis was okay, but he could have been better in his 15 minutes on the floor. He finished with 3 points and two assists, converting 1-of-3 field goal attempts. But the offense didnt run with much fluidity under his guidance, though it was smoother than when starting shooting guard Rodney Purvis ran things. The No. 18 Wolfpack led 12-7 with 10:38 left in the half when Purvis went down and Pack led 31-24 at the half. But they were outscored 34-24 after halftime and had a lot of trouble getting good looks. We didnt execute nearly as well as we should have late in the game and we also had some opportunities where we had the ball right around the rim, Gottfried said. We just couldnt seem to score. That was tough. One of the problems was that as decorated as Lewis was entering school, he hasnt gotten nearly enough experience getting ready for such emergencies. Gottfried stuck to his core six-man rotation too often in November and December games, and by the time ACC play arrived, it was obvious he didnt trust Lewis that much. In fact, in seven ACC games before Tuesday, Lewis played just 23 minutes. In defense of Gottfried, Lewis looked out of place in his two minutes of action in a victory over Duke, but as much as anything, that has probably been a byproduct of not getting enough minutes against more inferior competition. Lewis played just nine minutes against Cleveland State, four versus Stanford, 10 against St. Bonaventure, and nine against UNC-Greensboro. And if preparing for a possible injury to Brown was Gottfrieds focus as much as winning the minutes at hand regardless of the competition, Lewis should have gotten more minutes against Penn State (he had 10), Connecticut (six), Norfolk State (16), and even Georgia Tech, in which he played just five minutes in States 83-70 victory. Lewis saw no action in a one-point loss at Maryland. If Brown cant play in Saturdays home game against soaring No. 14 Miami (16-3, 7-0), Lewis will be the teams most important player. Gottfried has to go with the other point guard on the roster. Playing Purvis means freshman T.J. Warren will start, and that certainly helps the Wolfpack (16-5, 5-3 ACC) maintain a very talented starting five, but it also means two players are essentially out of position: Purvis and whoever the two guard is. Scott Wood can shoot, but hes not a great defender on small forwards, much less shooting guards. Warren is comfortable on the perimeter, but is most productive playing closer to the basket, so he needs to play the three position. Purvis can spell Lewis, but Gottfried has to go with a young man he felt enough of to give a scholarship. I think hes (Brown) the best point guard in the ACC, Gottfried said. Obviously, we are different without him. We have to overcome that, and if he doesnt play on Saturday well have to do that for 40 minutes. Its part of the game. I think it affects everything. Injuries are part of the game so you just have to find a way. Lewis may not be Brown, but hes States best option of Brown cant go.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Sanu: Halftime show played role in Super Bowl collapse

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

Report: Rams, Clippers discussing NBA venue in Inglewood

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

LeBron reverses course, says he ‘always felt good’ about Cavs

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

Jamaal Charles could be on the roster bubble

Jimmy Butler on state of Bulls: ‘I just want to win at all costs’

Report: Giants will be ‘aggressive’ in trying to sign Jason Pierre-Paul

Report: Porzingis avoided ligament damage in ankle

Brooks Koepka meltdown includes whiff, stomping head off driver

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker