A last-second desperation shot by Maryland's Betsy Bailey dropped off the rim as N.C. State held on for a 53-52 Atlantic Coast Conference women's basketball victory last night at Cole Field House.

The loss dropped the Terps out of a share for the league lead with a 2-1 mark and gave Maryland a 40-3 over-all record. State, ranked seventh nationally, is 3-0 in the ACC and 11-3 overall.

State's margin of victory came on a free throw by June Doby with 1:2, to play after a foul by Bailey.

Maryland, ranked third mationally, had struggled back from an eightpoint halftime deficit ti tie the game at 52 with 1:56 remaining. But the Terps could not make any of four free throws in the final 90 seconds.

Wolfpack Coach Kay Yow attributed the victory to a "super defensive first half" when her team shut out the Terps' leading scorer, Kris Kirchner, and held Maryland to 32 percent shooting.

Meanwhile, North Carolina State made 52 percent of its field goals and outrebounded Maryland, 20-13.

Maryland pulled within four, 40-36, with 13:05 left in the second half, before State's Ronnie Laughlin dumped in two inside shots for a 44-36 advantage with 11:52 left.

The Terps then outscored State, 6-2, and tied it up, 46-all, on a Kirchner jumper with 7:35 to go. The lead continued to seesaw until Doby hit a jump shot to make it 52-8 with 3:42 left.

Debbie Stewart converted both ebds of a one-and-one situation at 3:18, and Krystal Kimrey's jumper tied it again at 52.

Lynn Callander and Kimrey missed chances to put Maryland ahead by failing on the first half of one-and-one free throw situations at 1:49 and 0:46.

Maryland's Lisa Schlesinger fould State's Ginger Rouse with 1j seconds to play. The former Robinson High All-met missed her free throw and Bailey grabbed the rebound as Maryland called out.

Bailey, heavily covered on the inbounds pass, was off balance as she took her final shot, which hit the rim ane bounced off.