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Tigers Topped at the Buzzer

Tigers Topped at the Buzzer

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Amber Campbell’s steal and banked floater with 0.3 seconds to play gave Wake Forest (10-12, 1-7 ACC) a 64-62 win over Clemson (9-12, 1-7 ACC) in Joel Coliseum on Thursday night. Nikki Dixon scored 25 points, had eight rebounds, and took three charges to lead all players and moved into eighth place on Clemson’s all-time scoring list during the contest.

Clemson forced a season-high 29 Wake Forest turnovers, scoring 28 points off the miscues and took a season-high six charges in the game. The Tigers also hit 23-27 (.852) free throws, in fighting back from a double-digit first half deficit take take a lead midway through the second half. Clemson led by as many as 10 with 13:47 to play after an 18-2 run, but Wake rallied to pull ahead with 3:20 to play.

Wake led by three with 1:07 to play when Cha’nelle Perry hit a layup to pull the Tigers within one. On the ensuing possession, Shelbie Davenport drew a charge on Dearica Hamby, the All-ACC performer fifth foul of the game. Hamby, who entered the game averaging 20.6 points and 10.6 rebounds per game had just 11 and four, respectively, in the game.

Dixon hit a driving floater and gave the Tigers a 62-61 lead with 9.0 seconds to play after she earned the Tigers another possession by pulling down an offensive rebound. Wake Forest took it down the floor quickly and the Tigers were whistled for a foul with 2.7 seconds left. Kelila Atkinson went to the line to shoot two, making the first to tie the game.

After missing the second of two, Clemson was awarded the team rebound with 2.3 seconds to play under the Wake Forest basket. Perry, who had 11 points in the second half, threw the ball away on the inbounds pass. Amber Campbell picked up the loose ball and hit a banked floater just inside the free throw line with 0.3 seconds left to seal it.

The Tigers return to action on Sunday against Virginia at 2 p.m. on IPTAY Day. Virginia is head coach Audra Smith’s alma mater, and Smith it UVa’s ACC Legend this season.

Individual Notes:

Nikki Dixon took the three charges, giving her 15 on the season and 43 in her careerDixon passed Tara Saunooke (1462 points, 1991-95) for 8th on the all-time Clemson scoring list in the first half; Dixon now has 1,476 in her careerDixon passed Itoro Umoh for 2nd in school history in career free throws made. Dixon has hit 396 freebies in her career. Dixon recorded her sixth 20+ point game of the season and 21st of her careerFreshman Cha’Nelle Perry tallied 11 points, all in the second half, scoring in double figures 6th time of her careerShelbie Davenport took two charges, giving her 13 on the year

Team Notes:Clemson shot 23-27 from the free throw line, the team’s most makes and attempts in ACC play this seasonClemson forced Wake Forest into 29 turnovers, the most by a Clemson opponent this seasonClemson held the Demon Deacons to only two fast break points in the entire contestThe Tigers made a season low one three pointer on 14 attempts

Kelly Gramlich At the Buzzer:

The Clemson Tigers trailed by six at halftime against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons but came out of the intermission recharged, going on an impressive 18-2 run to start the second half of the contest. However, the Tigers’ stellar second half performance was not enough as Wake Forest’s Amber Campbell hit a layup with 0.3 seconds to go to win the game for the Demon Deacons. Clemson’s offense was lead once again by senior Nikki Dixon who scored 25 points, her highest point total in ACC play this season. Furthermore, Dixon shot an impressive 9-11 from the free throw line and also led the Tigers in rebounding with eight boards.

Wake Forest outrebounded the Tigers 37-34 and outscored Clemson in the paint 34-28. The Demon Deacons shot well from the floor and made four threes while Clemson only made one. However, the Tigers did force Wake Forest into 29 turnovers and held the Demon Deacons to only two fast break points in the entire contest. The Clemson Tigers played extremely well for the better part of tonight’s game, showing heart, resiliency and toughness. The Demon Deacons simply just got the last chance to score and the Tigers ran out of time in Winston-Salem tonight. Let’s hope Clemson can bounce back from this heartbreaking loss and focus on preparing for their matchup with Virginia on Sunday in Littlejohn.