Leslie leads No 10 NC State women past Hampton 8351

RALEIGH, N.C. — Kiara Leslie scored a season-high 24 points and No. 10 North Carolina State beat Hampton 83-51 on Wednesday.Aislinn Konig added 16 points and Grace Hunter had 12 for the Wolfpack (9-0) while Leslie hit a career-best five 3-pointers. They shot 49 per cent, hit 10 3s and built a 41-28 rebounding advantage in their first game as a top-10 team since 2014.Laren Vanarsdale scored 15 points, Ashley Bates had 14 and Kaylah Lupoe finished with 10 to lead Hampton (3-3), but only two other players scored. The Pirates shot 32 per cent yet pulled within 13 points on Lashayla Wright-Ponder’s long jumper with about 2 1/2 minutes left in the third quarter.N.C. State countered with a 21-3 run that pushed the Wolfpack’s lead into the 30s. Konig started the burst with a 3 and Kai Crutchfield followed that with a layup in transition. Hunter’s layup with under 5 minutes left made it 73-42.BIG PICTUREHampton: The Big South Conference newcomers won six Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championships from 2010-17 and are no stranger to the ACC, visiting Duke three times for NCAA Tournament games and beating North Carolina in the regular season last year. But taking on loaded N.C. State was a tall order for a team that’s adjusting to a new league and has six freshmen and four transfers.N.C. State: The Wolfpack kept alive their best start since 1999-2000 and remained perfect in nonconference home games since 2015. Their roll could continue for quite a while. They don’t play a team currently ranked until Feb. 13, when they visit No. 15 Syracuse five days before playing host to defending national champion Notre Dame.UP NEXTHampton: Plays host to Mid-Atlantic Christian on Dec. 15.N.C. State: Visits Georgetown on Saturday.The Associated Press


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