The 2019-20 athletic schedule was cut short by the coronavirus crisis that forced the cancellation of the NCAA basketball and wrestling tournaments, as well as most of the spring season.
But despite those disappointments, there were still plenty of memorable moments and achievements to celebrate.
As the academic year officially comes to a close, SI All Wolfpack looks back at the NC State's top 10 athletic performances of 2019-20. Today, it's No. 1: The women's basketball team's drought-ending ACC tournament title victory against Florida State.
NC State came into the ACC women’s basketball tournament as the No. 2 seed. But coach Wes Moore’s team had its share of questions after going through a mid-February slump that saw it lose three out of four games.
All at home.
But the Wolfpack seemed to regain its confidence with a pair of impressive wins to close out the regular season, including one at Virginia in which it set an NCAA record by making its first 13 three-point attempts. And the momentum continued to build once it arrived in Greensboro.
Not only did State play two solid games in beating Georgia Tech and Boston College, but the fates even smiled on it when top-seeded Louisville was upset in the semifinals by No. 4 Florida State -- giving the Wolfpack its best opportunity in recent memory to end a drought of 29 years without a conference championship.
It was an opportunity senior Aislinn Konig and her teammates weren’t about to let pass them by.
Rallying from five down with 4½ minutes remaining, they closed out the tournament final on a 13-3 run for a gritty 71-66 victory.
Konig earned tournament MVP honors by scoring 18 points and hitting three of her four three-pointers in the decisive second half. All-ACC center Elissa Cunane also scored 18 points, to go along with nine rebounds and two key steals during the late surge while a pair of freshmen -- Jakia Brown-Turner and Jada Boyd -- helped provide the spark that carried the Wolfpack to its first ACC championship since 1991.
It was also State's first league title of any kind in basketball, football or baseball since 1992, an accomplishment that set off a wild celebration among both the players and coaches on the court and the predominantly red-clad crowd of 7,324 in the stands.
"There's no words to describe the type of feeling that the whole team has right now," said Konig afterward "This was a family that came together and really bought in and played together throughout this whole tournament and through the ups and downs through the season.
"Being able to celebrate that with them and the coaching staff and the amazing fans who filled up this arena for us is super special. To be part of this legacy of NC State that has had so many contributors from before us and will guarantee to have after us, it's amazing to be part of that."
NC State Top 10 of 2019-20
1, Women's basketball's first ACC title since 1991
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