Cunane powers No. 2 NC State women past Saint Mary’s 101-73

ACC Basketball

North Carolina State forward Kayla Jones, a Riverside High School graduate (25), dribbles against Saint Mary’s forward Ali Bamberger during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Raleigh, N.C., Sunday, Dec. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Elissa Cunane had 15 points and nine rebounds as No. 2 N.C. State won its 10th straight game, beating Saint Mary’s 101-73 Sunday.

Cunane scored nine points during an early 18-0 run that put the Wolfpack (10-1) in control.

Kayla Jones added 13 points, Jakia Brown-Turner had 11 points and six rebounds for N.C. State. Aziaha James tallied 11 points, five rebounds and two steals.

Jade Kirisome led the Gaels (5-4) with 17 points. Ali Bamberger had 13 points and nine rebounds.

Saint Mary’s tied it at 7 on a 3-pointer from Makena Mastora. The Wolfpack then broke away with their big run.

N.C. State grew its lead to as much as 30 points, and Saint Mary’s was unable to trim the deficit to single digits over the final three quarters.

BIG PICTURE

Saint Mary’s: The Gaels outscored N.C. State 22-21 in the third quarter, but the early deficit they dug themselves into proved too deep. … Saint Mary’s shot just 53.8% on free throws.

N.C. State: In these blowout victories over mid-majors, coach Wes Moore has been able to get valuable minutes for his non-starters. Six players off the bench played double-digit minutes for the Wolfpack, including freshman guard Jessica Timmons, who scored a season-high nine points. N.C. State outscored Saint Mary’s 52-20 in bench points. The experience that N.C. State’s reserves are getting now could be valuable in the postseason.

UP NEXT

Saint Mary’s: The Gaels travel to Conway, South Carolina, to face undefeated Coastal Carolina on Wednesday.

N.C. State: The Wolfpack host their fourth ranked opponent this season, playing No. 21 Georgia on Thursday.

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