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Dorn leads NC State past Robert Morris, 81-69

RALEIGH (AP) — North Carolina State saved itself from another defeat by defending the 3-point line and getting the ball to its biggest players.

Three Wolfpack players had double-doubles in an 81-69 victory over Robert Morris on Tuesday night.

Torin Dorn had 17 points and 10 rebounds, Omer Yurtseven added 12 points and 10 rebounds and Lennard Freeman had 11 points and 12 rebounds.

Abdul-Malik Abu finished with 15 points for the Wolfpack (9-3). They shot 43 percent and built a 48-38 rebounding advantage in bouncing back from a loss to UNC Greensboro three days earlier that snapped a 20-game home winning streak against nonconference opponents.

“They made so many 3s that we thought if we just took that away, which we did in the second half, it would just make things easier for us,” Yurtseven said. “They missed a lot of 3s — we made them miss a lot of 3s.”

Matty McConnell had 17 points and four of the Colonials’ season-high-tying 10 3-pointers, and Dachon Burke finished with 12 points.

Robert Morris (6-6) led for nearly 30 minutes before the Wolfpack took control down the stretch, holding the Colonials without a field goal for four crucial minutes.

“Their size and strength really affected us,” Robert Morris coach Andrew Toole said. “It’s one thing to have the size and strength affect you. It’s a second thing to not do what we work on every day.”

Yurtseven broke a 57-all tie with a hook shot with just over seven minutes remaining, and that started the 12-1 run that gave N.C. State its first double-figure lead. Abu’s slam of an alley-oop feed from Braxton Beverly made it 68-58 with 4½ minutes to play.

“Thank goodness we can throw the ball inside to our post guys and get some baskets,” coach Kevin Keatts said. “Losing the UNCG game, you learn a lesson, but you would rather learn a lesson through a win. We learned a lesson through the first half.”

KEY STAT

Robert Morris was 7 of 13 from 3-point range in the first half, but just 3 of 18 from long distance in the second half. The Colonials shot 50 percent overall in the opening 20 minutes compared to just 25 percent in the last 20. The Wolfpack have allowed 22 total 3-pointers in their last two games.

UP NEXT

Robert Morris: The Colonials play host to Canisius on Friday night.

N.C. State: The Wolfpack play host to Jacksonville on Friday night in their last game before ACC play begins.

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More AP college basketball: https://collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

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