Clemson Defeats Florida State 53-49
TALLAHASEE, Fla. (AP) – K.J. McDaniels scored 26 points as Clemson defeated Florida State 53-49 on the road in Atlantic Coast Conference action Saturday afternoon.
The Tigers (14-6, 5-3) survived a slow-moving defensive battle in which both teams failed to shoot 40 percent from the floor most of the game.
Jeron Blossomgame scored 10 points and Jordan Roper added eight for Clemson. McDaniels was one-point shy of his career high and his three 3-pointers tied the second-most he’s hit all season.
“KJ was unbelievable tonight,” Clemson coach Brad Brownell said. “He played at an exceptionally high level. I’m hoping that people in this league take notice of that.
“He’s our best player. We try to put the ball in his hands to make plays.”
The Tigers finished shooting 43.2 percent from the floor after shooting 28.6 percent in the first half.
“Florida State, they’re a great defensive team, they’re a long team,” McDaniels said. “I just had to find those open spots to get to and try to wedge my way through there.
“My shoot-around this morning was great. I felt like I had the right energy and I had so much confidence. I’ve always had good games in here. I like Florida State. I like their court. Just going out there being aggressive and playing as hard as I can for my team.”
Florida State (13-8, 4-5) dropped its third consecutive game as Okaro White was held to nine points. Ian Miller, who entered the game as the Seminoles’ leading scorer, suffered a sprained ankle in the first half and did not return. Aaron Thomas scored a team-high 13 points while Florida State shot just 34 percent (16 of 47) from the floor.
Seminoles coach Leonard Hamilton was unsure about Miller’s health and said the team will need more production from its big men. If Miller misses time, that’s 13.3 points game each night.
“We’re going to hope that he goes to church tomorrow and gets some divine intervention so he’ll be able to give us some help on Wednesday,” Hamilton said.
Clemson hosts Georgia Tech on Tuesday as Florida State hosts Virginia Tech on Wednesday.
Georges-Hunt Leads Ga Tech Past Wake Forest, 79-70
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) – Marcus Georges-Hunt scored a career-high 23 points and Georgia Tech held on to beat Wake Forest 79-70 on Saturday.
Daniel Miller added 16 points for the Yellow Jackets (12-10, 3-6 Atlantic Coast Conference).
They shot 49 percent, used an impressive run that bridged the halves and held off the Demon Deacons’ late surge to avoid their third loss to a North Carolina-based ACC school in a seven-day span.
Travis McKie scored a career-high 26 points for Wake Forest (14-8, 4-5), and his 3-pointer with 3:10 left made it 69-64.
But he missed one two possessions later. Georges-Hunt followed with a layup that made it a seven-point game with 1½ minutes left, Chris Bolden intercepted Devin Thomas’ inbounds pass and Kammeon Holsey hit two free throws to push the Yellow Jackets’ lead to 73-64.
Bolden added 12 points for Georgia Tech. The ACC’s second-worst 3-point-shooting team hit six 3s – all in the first half – against a Wake Forest defense that entered as the league’s second-best at defending the arc.
Codi Miller-McIntyre, who averages 14.6 points, scored all 10 of his points in the first half but didn’t play in the second after injuring an ankle while going for a rebound with 4.9 seconds left.
Wake Forest, which had its 13-game winning streak at Joel Coliseum ended three nights earlier by No. 2 Syracuse – has lost two in a row at home for the first time in nearly two years.
Holsey finished with 10 points for the Yellow Jackets, who also lost a high-scoring guard in the first half. Leading scorer Trae Golden, who also averages 14.6 points, suffered an apparent groin injury midway through the first half for Brian Gregory’s injury-riddled team.
One of the key plays in this one was a 3-pointer that Wake Forest had taken off the board.
Coron Williams appeared to have pulled the Demon Deacons within four points by rattling in a 3 with 14½ minutes left. But the officials conferred and determined that Tyler Cavanaugh pulled the net while the ball was on the rim, disallowing the bucket.
Quinton Stephens followed with a long jumper to put Georgia Tech up by nine. Miller added a hook shot before and Stacey Poole Jr. each hit free throws to help the Yellow Jackets match their largest lead, 58-45, with 12 minutes left.
The Yellow Jackets showed some remarkable efficiency during a 24-8 run that started in the first half and ended in the second. Georgia Tech scored on 12 of 15 possessions and Bolden did much of the damage.
He scored 12 points during the run, and beat the halftime buzzer with a long 3-pointer. That was the Yellow Jackets’ sixth 3 of the half – or, more than they hit in 13 of their previous 21 full games.
Wells leads Maryland past Virginia Tech 80-60
BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) – Maryland guard Dez Wells and three of his teammates were late for his team’s breakfast shortly before the Terrapins game against Virginia Tech, and Maryland coach Kevin Turgeon decided not to start Wells.
The Hokies wished that Turgeon had not played him at all.
Coming off the bench for just the second time since transferring to Maryland in 2012, Wells scored 19 points to lead the Terrapins to an 80-60 victory over Virginia Tech on Saturday.
“Late is late,” Wells said, refusing to say how late he was. “Regardless of if it’s a minute or 30 minutes. I take responsibility for what happened, and it’s time to move on.”
“I thought Dez handled it really well,” Turgeon said.
Turgeon inserted Wells into the game after only 56 seconds had elapsed, and the junior guard went on to make 6 of 9 from the floor for Maryland (13-9, 5-4 ACC), which shot 51.8 percent (29 of 56) in winning its second in a row and beating the Hokies for the fourth-straight time.
The Terps did nearly everything right, hitting 8 of 15 from beyond the 3-point arc and out-rebounding the Hokies 38-29. Maryland turned the ball over just nine times and had 15 assists, all of which left one to wonder how this team has lost nine games this season.
“We can be pretty bad,” Wells said. “(Saturday), we were really good. We’re doing a lot of things really good right now. We would have liked to have started out the year playing like this. We’ve had stretches, like when we won the Paradise Jam championship (in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, on Nov. 22-25). We’ve strung together a couple of good wins now, and we want to build off this.”
Virginia Tech (8-13, 1-8), which lost its eighth straight game, stayed with the Terrapins until the final minute of the first half. The Hokies trailed 37-35 after Will Johnston hit a 3-pointer with 1:31 left in the half. But Maryland got 3-pointers on its final two possessions – one each from Seth Allen and Jake Layman – to take a 43-35 lead at halftime.
Ben Emelogu opened the second half with a 3-pointer for the Hokies to cut the Maryland lead to 43-38. But the Terrapins answered with a 14-2 run to grab a 17-point lead and take control.
Wells scored four points in the run, including a one-handed dunk that prompted a Virginia Tech timeout with 16:06 remaining. Nick Faust’s 3-pointer capped the run and gave the Terrapins a 57-40 lead with 14:51 to go.
“I thought our execution was good, and I thought our defense was the best it’s been in a while,” Turgeon said. “I know they missed some open ones and missed some free throws, but I through we really guarded their stuff well and did a nice job on things that we talked about and carried it over from the game plan.”
The Terrapins went on to lead by as many as 23, and the Hokies never got closer than 14 the rest of the game.
Emelogu paced Virginia Tech with 21 points. The Hokies, who shot just 37 percent (20 of 54) lost their third consecutive game by at least 20 points. They played without injured starters Adam Smith and C.J. Barksdale.
“We’re competing, but we’re not competing for 40 minutes,” Virginia Tech coach James Johnson said. “I’m not sure we have the gas in our tank to compete for 40 minutes. It’s tough and frustrating for me to look down at the bench and see three potential starters (Smith, Barksdale and freshman Malik Mueller, who was ruled ineligible by the NCAA before the season) in suits looking like me. But it is what it is. That’s what we have now. We’ll keep fighting.”
Allen added 16 points for the Terrapins, and Layman and Faust had 10 each.
Maryland now heads into a four-game stretch that may very well determine its NCAA Tournament fate. The Terrapins play at North Carolinaon Tuesday, and then play Florida State at home, at Virginia and at Duke.
“There’s no question the next four games are the toughest on our schedule,” Turgeon said. “Not that the last part is going to be easy, but I feel about our team. I just want our team to look like they play together and that they want to play the game and that they’re coached. That’s important to me, and I think we’re starting to play that way.”
Brown Leads Miami Past Norfolk State 64-49
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) – Rion Brown scored 15 points as Miami snapped a three-game losing streak and defeated Norfolk State 64-49 on Saturday.
The Hurricanes never trailed after a late first-half run that resulted in a 10-point lead at halftime.
Manu Lecomte scored 13 points and Garrius Adams finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds for the Hurricanes (11-10). The win was Miami’s first since a 56-42 Atlantic Coast Conference victory at Georgia Tech on Jan. 18.
3-pointers from Lecomte and Adams helped Miami on a 12-0 surge to start the second half that stretched its lead to 43-21. Tonye Jeriki’s jumper capped the run with 14:19 remaining.
Riley Maye’s jumper with 14:02 remaining ended a field-goal-scoring drought of 11:05 for the Spartans. Norfolk State missed 13 consecutive shots before Maye’s conversion.
The Hurricanes maintained a double-figure lead the remainder of the game. Norfolk State got to within 50-40 on Pendarvis Williams’ running jumper with 6:31 remaining.
Williams scored 21 points and Brandon Goode finished with 14 for the Spartans (12-10).
The Hurricanes overcame their only deficit and outscored Norfolk State 13-2 in the final 7:23 of the first half. Brown scored seven points during the run and his running jumper with 1:30remaining put the Hurricanes ahead at halftime 31-21.
Norfolk State shot 1 of 9 from the field and had five turnovers in its late first-half scoring drought.
The Spartans ran off nine unanswered points during a 2:18 span midway through the first half for their first lead. Williams scored eight points, including two 3-pointers, in the spurt. Williams’ second 3-pointer with 8:05 remaining ended the run and gave Norfolk State a 19-18 advantage.
Lecomte hit two 3-pointers early as Miami built a 15-8 lead 6:31 into the game. A 3-pointer from Brown with 10:40 remaining increased the Hurricanes lead to 18-10.
Miami resumes ACC play with a home game against Pittsburgh on Wednesday night. Norfolk State will return to its Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference schedule Feb. 8 at Morgan State.
North Carolina beats NC State 84-70
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) – James Michael McAdoo had 16 points and 13 rebounds to help North Carolina beat rival North Carolina State 84-70 on Saturday.
Leslie McDonald scored a season-high 20 points for the Tar Heels (14-7, 4-4 Atlantic Coast Conference), who won their third straight game. North Carolina scored the game’s first six points, led by double figures 7 minutes in and by 17 at halftime to continue its recent dominance against the Wolfpack (14-8, 4-5) under Hall of Fame coach Roy Williams.
The Tar Heels have won 21 of 23 meetings since Williams returned to his alma mater in 2003, including all 11 meetings in Chapel Hill. N.C. State hasn’t been closer than nine points in the past 10 meetings at the Smith Center.
T.J. Warren scored 21 to lead the Wolfpack, who had won three straight – the past two by a combined six points – to build some momentum.
But N.C. State didn’t do much to reverse its long-running struggles in Chapel Hill, missing 10 of 11 shots to open the game and going 10-for-40 (25 percent) in the opening half to trail 40-23. The Tar Heels pushed that margin to 22 points three times – twice with spurts coming after N.C. State had pulled to within 13 – and never let the Wolfpack get the lead to single digits.
The Tar Heels shot just 41 percent and finished with a 52-36 rebounding advantage, including a 22-12 edge on the offensive glass that led to 20 second-chance points – though they blew plenty of in-close looks and finished just 17-for-45 on shots in the paint.
McAdoo had six offensive rebounds, while freshman Kennedy Meeks had five of his 10 rebounds on the offensive glass.
N.C. State shot 65 percent (17-for-26) after halftime to make things more interesting and finished the game at 41 percent, but it never recovered from its bad start that kept Mark Gottfried’s Wolfpack in catch-up mode all afternoon. Warren finished 9-for-16 from the field, while Desmond Lee scored all 18 of his points in the second half.
The Wolfpack scored two straight baskets to start the second half only to see the Tar Heels answer with a 9-0 burst – ending with putbacks from McAdoo and Meeks – that pushed UNC to a 49-27 lead with 17:18 left.
Then, after the Wolfpack made another push to get the gap back to 13 again, the Tar Heels put together an 8-0 run and six straight scoring possessions to push the lead back to 22. McDonald ended that run with a 3-pointer, pushing UNC’s lead back to 22 at 68-46 with 8:12 left.
Warren’s basket with 90 seconds left cut the deficit to 76-66, but the Wolfpack got no closer.
Notre Dame Beats Boston College 76-73 In OT
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Eric Atkins hit a 3-pointer with 1 second left in overtime after missing a potential game-winning free throw in regulation to give Notre Dame a 76-73 victory over Boston College on Saturday, ending a three-game losing streak for the Irish.
The Eagles led most of the way and Ryan Anderson scored four straight points for Boston College to tie the score at 73 with 35 seconds left, but Atkins took the inbounds pass and drove the ball up the court and hit the game-winner to finish with 24 points.
The Irish (12-10, 3-6 Atlantic Coast Conference) won for just the second time in their last eight games. Boston College (6-15, 2-6) fell to 1-7 on the road.
Both teams squandered chances to win in regulation. The Eagles had a chance to open a three-point lead with 7 seconds left, but Olivier Hanlan missed the front end of a one-and-one, ending a streak of 13 straight made free throws by the Eagles. Atkins then drove the length of the court and appeared to lose control of the ball, but Hanlan was called for the foul with 0.7 seconds left. Atkins tied the game with his first free, throw, but missed the second.
Atkins scored 16 of his 24 points in the second half and overtime to lead the Irish to the victory. Pat Connaughton added 17 points and nine rebounds and Zach Auguste and V.J. Beachem finished with 10. Beachem scored all his points after intermission, including a 3-pointer early in overtime that gave the Irish their first lead since the first half, as Irish reserves scored 15 points in the second half after being held scoreless in the first.
Anderson led Boston College with 21 points, Lonnie Jackson had 15 and Joe Rahon added 11. Alex Dragicevich, who played for Notre Dame before transferring following his sophomore season in 2012 because of a lack of playing time, made his first start for BC since Dec. 28. He was booed by the Notre Dame student section every time he touched the ball, and when he finally hit a 3-pointer late in the first half, his teammates on the bench stood up and cheered.
Boston College led by as many as nine points in the second half, but the Irish closed to within a point twice before finally tying the score at 58 on a three-point play by Atkins with 3:32left. After trading baskets, Boston College scored four straight points on a layup by Jackson and a pair of free throws by Rahon. Atkins then hit a 3 for Notre Dame with 47 seconds left to cut the lead to 64-63.
No. 2 Syracuse Beats No. 17 Duke 91-89 In OT
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) – Jerami Grant scored eight points in overtime to finish with a career-high 24 and Jim Boeheim’s No. 2 Syracuse stayed unbeaten, topping Mike Krzyzewski’s No. 17 Duke 91-89 on Saturday in a matchup of the two winningest coaches in Division I history.
Coach K said before the game that he hoped the highly anticipated matchup lived up to its billing. After the Orange withstood a tying 3-pointer in regulation and won before a Carrier Dome record crowd of 35,446, Boeheim said it certainly did, and then some.
“We’ve had a lot of games that have been here that are great. There’s never been one as good as this one,” Boeheim said.
C.J. Fair scored a career-best 28 points as Syracuse (21-0, 8-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) set a school record for consecutive wins to start a season. The Orange remained one of three undefeated teams in the nation, along with No. 1 Arizona and No. 4 Wichita State.
Syracuse students camped out in the cold and were part of a crowd that was charged up from the start for the first ACC meeting between these longtime powers.
Duke’s Rasheed Sulaimon beat the buzzer in regulation with an off-balance 3-pointer that tied it at 78. The Blue Devils led 87-84 with 80 seconds left in overtime before Syracuse rallied.
Jabari Parker had 15 points and nine rebounds before fouling out in regulation for Duke (17-5, 6-3). The Blue Devils, who had won five in a row, get their chance to avenge the loss in three weeks when the teams meet again at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
From the moment Boeheim and Krzyzewski walked onto Jim Boeheim Court to a deafening roar and hugged at midcourt surrounded by a sea of orange, the atmosphere was electric. Singing and acting star Vanessa Williams, a Syracuse alum and former Miss America, performed the national anthem.
The game was chock full of story lines, well before the tipoff.
Two Hall of Fame coaches and good friends with a combined 1,914 wins who had only met twice before on opposing benches, each winning once. Boeheim’s signature 2-3 zone defense vs. Krzyzewski’s intense man-to-man.
Fair, Syracuse’s leading scorer, vs. Andre Dawkins, a fifth-year senior who leads the ACC in 3-point shooting. Parker vs. Syracuse point guard Tyler Ennis, two of the most accomplished freshmen in the country.
The game was tied at 78 after regulation, and there were two more ties in the extra session. Grant had three straight slams for the Orange, while Dawkins hit a follow and a 3 from the top of the key as Duke took a three-point lead with 1:20 left.
Two free throws by Ennis moved the Orange within one and two more by Grant gave the Orange an 88-87 lead with 39 seconds left.
Duke’s Rodney Hood missed a dunk attempt against Rakeem Christmas with 12.2 seconds remaining – Hood wanted a foul but nothing was called. Two more free throws by Ennis as Amile Jefferson fouled out made it 90-87.
Sulaimon sank a pair of free throws for Duke to make it a one-point game with 9.4 seconds left, but Fair was fouled and converted one of two from the line with 5.5 seconds to go.
Duke scrambled to get off a last shot and Quinn Cook missed a rushed fling from the right wing at the buzzer as Syracuse escaped.
Grant had 12 rebounds. Trevor Cooney and Ennis each scored 14 points for the Orange.
Ennis had nine assists with two turnovers in a game in which both teams committed just eight.
Sulaimon finished with 16 points. Jefferson, Dawkins, and Hood finished with 14 points for Duke.
Syracuse led 38-35 at the break and Fair continued the play that made him the preseason pick for ACC player of the year. He swished a pull-up 3 from the top of the key to get going early in the second half as the Orange maintained its slim lead.
Every time Syracuse threatened to go on a run, Duke answered. When Grant’s lay-in gave the Orange a 51-47 lead, Sulaimon countered with a 3. And when Cooney followed with his second 3 of the game, Hood hit his third 3.
Parker’s three-point play at 11:05 gave Duke a 56-54 lead, its first since just past the midpoint of the opening half. But just when he seemed set to spark the Blue Devils, Parker picked up two quick fouls to give him four and Dawkins was whistled for his fourth just over a minute later.
Fair responded by scoring eight points and Cooney hit from the wing as the Orange went up 66-59 with 6:37 left. Undaunted, Tyler Thornton rescued Duke with three 3-pointers in less than two minutes and Parker’s basket underneath tied it at 70-all with 3:53 to play.
Sulaimon hit two 3-pointers in the final minute of regulation. He even got a chance at a four-point play, but missed the foul shot with 47.6 seconds left.