Dudley Bradley's steal and slam-dunk with two seconds remaining tonight staved off a furious comeback by 18th-ranked North Carolina State and gave second-ranked North Carolina a 70-69 Atlantic Coast Conference victory.
The Wolfpack came back from a 21-point halftime deficit to take the lead 69-68 on a four-point play with 32 seconds remaining. North Carolina State appeared to have the game wrapped up with Tiny Pinder rebounding a North Carolina shot. But Bradley stole the ball at midcourt and drove in for the slam-dunk.
After a dismal first half, Charles (Hawkeye) Whitney scored 17 points in the second half in which the Wolfpack overcame North Carolina's "four corners" delay offense. Al Wood led UNC with 21 points and Whitney led the Wolfpack with 19.
The 6-foot-6 Bradley put North Carolina ahead 5-4 with 15:30 remaining in the first half, and the Tar Heels steadily added to the margin, largely on Wood's 13 first-half points.
But in the opening of the second period, the Wolfpack went on an 11-1 tear and employed a pressing zone defense to cut the Tar Heel lead to 41-30.
With less than three minutes to play, Whitney, in foul trouble, ran through heavy traffic and was fouled for a three-point play to trim North Carolina's lead to one point, 68-67.