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Men’s Hoops Wins Crucial Game

Feb. 26, 1998

RALEIGH (AP) – Johnny Miller hit a 3-pointer from the right wing with 27.4 seconds left to help Clemson keep it NCAA tournament hopes alive with a 77-72 win over North Carolina State Thursday night.

Miller’s shot gave Clemson (16-12, 6-9 Atlantic Coast Conference) a 71-68 lead and the Tigers, the worst free-throw shooting team in the ACC at 61 percent, made 6 of 6 from the line in the closing seconds to ice the win.

Harold Jamison scored 17 and Greg Buckner and Terrell McIntyre scored 15 each for Clemson.

C.C. Harrison scored 25 points in his final regular-season home game to lead N.C. State (15-12, 5-10).

The Tigers pushed a six-point halftime lead to 47-35 in the first five minutes of the second half but Harrison hit a 3-pointer from the left wing, a turnaround jumper and another 3-pointer from the top of the key during a 17-2 N.C. State run.

He was called for his fourth foul with 11:55 left but the Pack led 52-49 after two free throws by Kenny Inge with 9:43 left.

Two free throws by Greg Buckner with 9:28 left cut the lead to one at 52-51. The lead changed hands seven times over the final eight minutes.

Mohamed Woni’s 17-footer with 1:25 left gave Clemson a 68-66 lead. Ishua Benjamin tied the game with two free throws 24 seconds later to set up Miller’s heroics.

The Wolfpack opened the game with a 14-7 run, hitting 6 of its first 8 shots. Harrison scored 10 points during the spurt but had just two the rest of the half as Clemson’s defense took control. The Tigers held the Wolfpack without a field goal for 6 1/2 minutes during part of a 24-6 run.

Harrison ended State’s drought with a driving lay-in with 4:13 left to cut the Tigers’ lead to 31-22. But he picked up his third foul 30 seconds later, fouling Terrell McIntyre on a 3-point attempt at the top of the key.

Ron Kelley scored six points in the final 3:29 of the first half and Kenny Inge scored inside with 20 seconds left to trim Clemson’s lead to four. McIntyre pushed the lead back to six with two free throws with .6 seconds left.

Clemson’s second conference road win of the season was also Rick Barnes’ 200th career victory.