New Orleans Stuns No. 21 N.C. St. 65-63
Monday, November 19, 2007; 4:46 AM
RALEIGH, N.C. -- T.J. Worley made a promise to New Orleans star Bo McCalebb.
"I told Bo during the game, 'I'm not losing this game for you,'" Worley said.
Instead, with time running out, he won it _ with a most unlikely shot.
Worley banked in a 3-pointer with 1.7 seconds left to help the Privateers become the latest mid-major to spring an upset, a 65-63 stunner against No. 21 North Carolina State on Sunday night.
"Our guys have been through so much _ our seniors have endured hurricanes, three coaching changes," first-year coach Joe Pasternack said. "To come in here and give them a win like this, to me that's everything special."
The wild final 15 seconds featured three lead changes, and New Orleans erased a late seven-point deficit by scoring eight straight points in the final 1:48, taking a 62-61 lead with 14.9 seconds left on McCalebb's two free throws.
Gavin Grant hit a layup over Jaroslav Tyrna to put N.C. State up 63-62 with 8.3 seconds left, and the Privateers frantically inbounded it to McCalebb, who lost control of the ball. Worley picked it up and heaved a 3-pointer over three defenders from about 25 feet that kissed off the glass.
"Bo lost the ball, I thought he was fouled and I was able to pick it up, and I shot it as quickly as possible," Worley said. "Thank God it went in."
Worley then broke up Brandon Costner's desperation pass to freshman J.J. Hickson as time expired, and the Privateers raced onto the court and danced at midcourt to celebrate an unlikely victory.
In other games involving ranked teams on Sunday, it was: No. 1 North Carolina 107, Iona 72; No. 6 Louisville 84, Jackson State 53, No. 8 Indiana 100 Longwood 49; No. 16 Texas 100, Arkansas-Monticello 52; No. 18 Arkansas 70, Virginia Commonwealth 60; and No. 24 Villanova 70, Bucknell 64.
"I want to see if we grow, if we take this experience tonight and use it and understand that feeling," N.C. State coach Sidney Lowe said. "I told them, 'I hope you really hurt right now, because you never want to have that feeling again.'"
McCalebb, the Sun Belt player of the year, scored 20 points on 5-for-19 shooting in his reunion game with former coach Monte Towe, a former N.C. State point guard who coached New Orleans from 2002-06 and recruited many of the Privateers before leaving to join Lowe's staff.