Late Bucket Lifts No. 1 Syracuse Past Wolfpack
Feb. 15, 2014
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - After a whirlwind day of travel, NC State led the nation's top-ranked team on the road with just seconds on the clock. However, the unbeaten Syracuse Orange escaped with a 56-55 win in front of 31,572 people at the Carrier Dome.
With NC State leading 55-53 with 41.4 seconds left, Syracuse's C.J. Fair split a pair of foul shots to cut the Pack's lead to 55-54. After a timeout, NC State turned the ball over against a Syracuse trap at half court. Syracuse's Tyler Ennis was called for a charge, and State had the ball back. Washington threw a long pass to Warren, who scored as he was fouled. The foul was called on the ground, and Syracuse later ended up with a steal and the game-winning lay-up with 6.3 seconds on the clock. A final jumper by T.J. Warren, who scored a game-high 23 points, fell off the front of the rim.
Syracuse (25-0, 12-0) was led by Rakeem Christmas (14 points, 12 rebounds) and Jerami Grant (12 points, 14 rebounds).
Going head-to-head with preseason All-ACC Player of the Year C.J. Fair, Warren on 11-for-22 shooting. He added three assists and three steals while Fair finished with 11 points on 5-for-16 shooting. Kyle Washington scored a career-high 14 points with 10 rebounds and Ralston Turner added 13 points.
NC State (16-9, 6-6) had its largest lead of the night when a Turner 3-pointer with 6:27 remaining gave the Pack a 50-45 lead. Syracuse answered with an 8-2 run to lead 53-52 with 3:16 left.
NC State led for much of the early parts of the second half until a lay-up by Jerami Grant gave the Orange a 40-39 lead. The eighth lead change of the game happened when Turner hit a 3-pointer at the 7:50 mark.
Warren and Washington led the Wolfpack in an extremely close first half. Warren had a pair of tip-in buckets and Washington used an array of jumpers and left hooks to quiet the large home crowd. A jumper by Washington tied the game 20-20. A pair of free throws by Ennis gave the lead back to SU but Washington buried a pull-up jumper at the top of the key to tie the game at 22-22.
After 20 minutes, the game was tied 26-26 with Warren and Washington each scoring 10 points. Defensively, NC State held Syracuse to .324 shooting, which was the second-lowest percentage for a first half by Syracuse this season.
NC State continues its February road swing Tuesday, Feb. 18 at Clemson. That contest is on ESPNU at 7 p.m.