Miami pulls away for 85-70 win over NC State
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Rion Brown scored 20 points and Miami pulled away to beat North Carolina State 85-70 on Saturday.
Garrius Adams added 16 points and Manu Lecomte and Erik Swoope had 15 apiece for the Hurricanes (15-14, 6-10 Atlantic Coast Conference).
The ACC’s worst shooting team shot a season-best 58.7 percent and set a season high for scoring.
Miami erased its only deficit of the second half by reeling off 13 straight points and winning its third in four games.
ACC scoring leader T.J. Warren had 20 points for the Wolfpack (17-12, 7-9). His dunk off a steal by Desmond Lee with about 6 1/2 minutes left put N.C. State up 65-64.
Tonye Jekiri followed with two free throws that gave the Hurricanes the lead for good. Adams banked in a jumper, Jekiri followed Brown’s missed 3 with a dunk and Adams converted a key three-point play.
Brown buried a dagger of a jumper with the shot clock winding down before Swoope’s two free throws ended the run and made it 77-65 with 2:15 left.
Jekiri added 14 points for Miami, which put up its first 80-point game since November and had five double-figure scorers for the first time since a Nov. 14 win over Texas Southern.
Kyle Washington had 13 points and Lee finished with 10 for N.C. State, which was playing three days after a tough-to-handle, one-point loss to rival North Carolina in overtime and at times appeared emotionally spent.
The Wolfpack went 5 1/2 minutes down the stretch without a field goal while Miami pulled away.
N.C. State scored 14 points off 11 Miami turnovers, and Warren scored eight of those points during a binge of four steal-and-scores over the 5-minute span in which the Wolfpack made a late charge.
The Hurricanes managed 12 field goals in their last game – a 25-point loss at No. 12 Virginia that marked their most lopsided defeat since 2007 – but had that many by halftime of this one.
These two played a tight game three weeks earlier in Miami, with neither team leading by double figures in N.C. State’s 57-56 win on Feb. 8.
For a while, anyway, this one was just as tight.
The Hurricanes – who average less than 60 points per game in league play – opened up a nine-point lead early in the second half after scoring on 10 of their first 12 possessions.
Swoope’s authoritative down-the-lane dunk with the shot clock about to expire gave Miami its largest lead at 53-44 with 13 1/2 minutes left.
But it temporarily tightened right back up once Warren – who missed seven of his first 10 attempts through constant pressure from the defense-minded Hurricanes – finally got going with his run of steals and easy buckets.
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