College basketball: NC State's Dennis Smith, Jr. throws down monster jam in Wolfpack's sixth win in a row
RALEIGH, N.C. – The NC State men's basketball team blew by Rider, 99-71, Wednesday night inside PNC Arena to close out the non-conference portion of the schedule. NC State improves to 11-2 overall and enters conference play on a six-game winning streak.
A balanced offensive effort saw six players score in double figures, while Dennis Smith, Jr. posted his first career double-double with a team-high 19 points and a PNC Arena record 16 assists. Smith's 16 assists are tied for the fourth-most in NC State history and mark the most since Chris Corchiani reached the mark in 1991. They are the most by an ACC player this season.
Two of Smith's points came in spectacular fashion when he dunked over three Rider defenders in the second half.
Abdul-Malik Abu added his 19th career double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Abu has posted three double-doubles this season and is the active ACC double-doubles leader. Omer Yurtseven recorded a career-high 16 points in his first career start.
Torin Dorn, Terry Henderson and Maverick Rowan all reached double figures as Dorn scored 13 and Henderson and Rowan added 12 each. Rowan's 12 points were off-the-bench as the Pack have now had a player score in double figures off-the-bench in five consecutive games.
The Wolfpack dominated on the glass for the second consecutive game, outrebounding Rider, 50-35. Abu led the team with 12 rebounds, while Ted Kapita had a career-high with 11 rebounds.
NC State pulled away from Rider early in the contest, going on a 15-3 run during the first half to take a 28-15 lead. The Pack led by as many as 17 points in the opening 20 minutes and entered halftime leading 40-25. During the first 16:40 of the opening half, NC State held Rider to just 17 percent shooting from the field as the Broncs missed 19 of 21 shots during one stretch. Rider's 25 points were the lowest an opponent has posted against NC State in an opening half this season.
NC State continued to pull away in the second half, extending its lead to as many as 34 points, as all five starters reached double digits. NC State shot 60 percent from the floor in the second half. The Pack outscored Rider 50-38 in the paint and 27-12 in fast break points.
NCAA.com writer Daniel Wilco contributed to this article.