#7 North Carolina State Women's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

North Carolina State Wolfpack
Overall Rank: #7
Conference Rank: #1 ACC
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North Carolina State enters the 2020-2021 campaign with dreams of the Final Four and their first ACC regular season title since 1990. With four starters returning to a team that went 28-4 last season, Coach Wes Moore has the talent and experience he needs for this to be one of the best seasons in Wolfpack history.
2019-20 Record: 28-4, 14-4
Coach: Wes Moore
Coach Record: 167-61 at NC State, 725-230 overall
Key Departed Players (starters in bold)
Aislinn Konig, Guard, 11.0 ppg
Grace Hunter, Guard, 5.1 ppg
Erika Cassell, Center, 2.5 ppg
Kaila Ealey, Guard, 1.3 ppg
Key Returning Players (starters in bold)
Elissa Cunane, Junior, Center, 16.4 ppg
Kayla Jones, Senior, Forward, 10.0 ppg
Jakia Brown-Turner, Guard/Forward, 9.4 ppg
Jada Boyd, Sophomore, Forward, 7.5 ppg
Kai Crutchfield, Senior, Guard, 7.5 ppg
Camille Hobby, Sophomore, Center, 2.2 ppg
Kendal Moore, Sophomore, Guard, 1.1 ppg
Jada Rice, Sophomore, Center, dnp last season
Key New Players
Genesis Bryant, Freshman, Guard
Rebecca Demeke, Freshman, Guard
Raina Perez, Senior, Guard, Grad Transfer from Cal State Fullerton
Elle Sutphin, RS Freshman, Forward
Dontavia Waggoner, Freshman, Guard
Center Elissa Cunane will be the star of the team. The 6-5 junior led the Wolfpack with 16.4 points, 9.6 rebounds and 1.1 blocks as a sophomore. Cunane shot 54.7 percent from the floor, but not all of her shots come right around the basket. She hit 44.7 percent of her 38 attempts from beyond the arc and if she starts taking more outside shots, no team in the ACC will have any luck defending Cunane. With Kayla Jones also hitting some three-pointers and the efficiency of reserve Jada Boyd, NC State has one of the best frontcourts in the country. Jakia Brown-Turner is the most proven scorer on the perimeter and Kai Crutchfield is also back. Those two will be the most dangerous three-point shooters on a team that ranked first in the ACC in three-point field-goals per game. Incoming top 50 recruits Dontavia Waggoner and Genesis Bryant should make an immediate impact, but the best newcomer is graduate transfer Raina Perez. She comes from Cal State Fullerton where she earned Big West Player of the Year accolades behind 19.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 71.6 (51st in nation, 5th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 57.0 (30, 3)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.7 (44, 4)
Field-Goal Defense: 35.5 (17, 1)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.4 (19, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 36.2 (24, 1)
Free-Throw Percentage: 71.8 (114, 6)
Rebound Margin: 8.9 (13, 1)
Assists Per Game: 14.6 (74, 4)
Turnovers Per Game: 14.0 (69, 5)
Madness 2020 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#47 Dontavia Waggoner
#49 Genesis Bryant