Lorenzo Charles scored 29 points and Nate McMillan made some big plays near the end of the game to help North Carolina State to a 71-68 Atlantic Coast Conference victory over host Clemson last night.
The loss ended a seven-game winning streak for the Tigers and left them with a 9-3 record (1-1 in the ACC). The Wolfpack is 9-4 (2-2 in conference).
The Wolfpack took a 17-4 lead with the help of eight points by Charles. The Tigers came back to take the lead at 22-21 on a 12-footer by Vince Hamilton with 8:40 left in the first half.
The lead changed hands four times before Spud Webb gave State a halftime advantage, 36-35, on a driving layup.
N.C. State built its lead to nine points twice in the second period, but Clemson cut the lead to one, 56-55, with 6:44 to play. State extended its lead to 63-57 on two free throws by Charles with 3:21 to play.
Clemson cut the lead to one again with 23 seconds left on a basket by Harvey Grant, but Charles sank two free throws with 10 seconds left. McMillan then intercepted a Clemson inbounds pass, was fouled with eight seconds left and made two free throws to clinch the victory.
"Charles had a great game," said N.C. State Coach Jim Valvano. "I think McMillan had his best effort of the season, especially on the boards, and Spud Webb hit some big shots. You need to have some things like that happen for you to win the tough ones."