Jan. 15, 2002
By PETE IACOBELLI AP Sports Writer
CLEMSON, S.C.- Freshman Josh Powell’s putback shot with 2.1 seconds to go capped a crazy finish in North Carolina State’s 80-79 victory against Clemson on Tuesday night.
Trailing 79-78 after Tony Stockman’s 15-footer with 10.8 seconds left, Anthony Grundy, who led the Wolfpack (13-4, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) with 22 points, drove the right baseline before his attempt came off the rim. But Powell, a 6-foot-9 freshman, was in front of the basket and easily put home the game-winner.
North Carolina State looked dead when Edward Scott’s driving bucket put the Tigers (11-7, 2-3) ahead 77-72 with 1:57 remaining.
However, Scooter Sherrill hit his fifth 3-pointer – it was the Wolfpack’s season-high 15th from behind the arc – and Grundy converted a three-point play to go ahead 78-77 and set up the final moments.
Powell’s bucket was the last in a game of wild swings.
The Wolfpack made 12 consecutive shots, including eight 3-pointers, during one stretch of the first half and led 44-33 by halftime.
Clemson, however, which shot 61.2 percent (30-of-49) for the game, went on a 25-13 run to take the lead, 58-57, on Chris Hobbs’ inside basket with 12:59 to go.
The lead changed 12 times after that, the final time on Powell’s follow.
Stockman’s desperate 60-footer at the buzzer was no good and Wolfpack players swarmed Powell.
The Wolfpack had lost four of their past six to Clemson and had been blown out by Duke, 76-57, this past Sunday.
Sherrill finished with 18 points, going 5-of-7 on 3-pointers.
Jamar McKnight and Stockman led Clemson with 18 points each. Ray Henderson had 11 points and 10 rebounds. Scott finished with 13 assists.
North Carolina State’s hot first half turned around a 15-7 deficit and was ignited by Grundy, the team’s leading scorer this season who did not start.
Grundy got things going with a bucket. Then after Archie Miller’s first 3-pointer, Grundy picked off a crosscourt pass for a breakaway basket and followed with a 3-pointer to tie things at 17-all.
Things got silly after that. Marcus Melvin, a 6-foot-8 forward, hit a 3-pointer, Illian Evtimov made a long one, Scooter Sherrill connected on two in a row behind the arc and Miller canned another one. Miller’s 15-footer was North Carolina State’s 12th bucket in a row and put the Wolfpack ahead 37-26.
Grundy’s next three-point attempt rolled in and out to finish the streak.
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