Feb. 10, 2011
RALEIGH, N.C. -- In the longest game in NC State history, and the NCAA's longest this season, Ariana Moorer's buzzer-beater in the fourth overtime gave Virginia a 94-92 win over the Wolfpack Thursday night in Reynolds Coliseum.
Moorer traveled the length of the court in 5.1 seconds and buried a leaning 10-footer to break a 92-92 tie at the buzzer to lift Virginia (14-12, 3-7 ACC) and leave NC State (10-14, 1-8 ACC) heartbroken.
"When you play a game like this you can come up with a hundred different things that could have gone the other way and helped us win the game," said NC State head coach Kellie Harper. "This will be the toughest challenge that we have had to bounce back from all year, but with this team's toughness and resiliency, we'll pull through."
Marissa Kastanek led the Pack with 23 points on 55 minutes of playing time, the most minutes logged by any player in the nation this season. Myisha Goodwin-Coleman played 52 minutes.
Bonae Holston fouled out of the game with 4:43 left in the first overtime after scoring 17 points, including the final seven of regulation. Freshman Kody Burke added seven blocks, the second-most in school history, and scored 15 of her 17 points after Holston left the game. Burke's seven blocks bolstered a team total of 12, also good for the second-highest total in team history.
"I think it's very important not to quit," said Kastanek. "We've gone through so much this year and this game just puts the cherry on top of it. Tomorrow, when we show up for practice we're going to be sore, and we're going to be tired, but we have each other. I think that's what we're going to take from this game: We can count on everybody with a Wolfpack shirt on."
In the closing minutes of regulation, Moorer scored to give Virginia a 56-52 lead. Holston scored on two possessions in a row to tie the game with less than one minute remaining. On the ensuing possession, Holston blocked China Crosby's shot, but an Amber White turnover with 32 seconds gave the Cavaliers a chance at the final shot.
Moorer held for the last shot of regulation, but once again Holston stepped up, blocking the potential game-winner with two seconds left to force overtime.
In the first overtime, Holston fouled out at the 4:43 mark, but Burke stepped up in her absence, scoring six consecutive points for the Pack to jump ahead 64-62 with 2:17 remaining.
Virginia tied the game at 66-all as China Crosby dribbled left over a screen, drove to the paint and found Whitny Edwards across the key for the tying bucket.
With only 8 seconds to generate a basket, White's fadeaway 18-footer at the buzzer hit the front rim to send the game to double overtime.
In the second overtime, Burke scored NC State's first six points as the Pack built a 74-69 advantage. Virginia cut the lead back to three with a pair of free throws, but Brittany Strachan's jumper with a foot on the three-point line held the Cavalier's at arm's length, 76-71, with 57.9 remaining.
Edwards answered quickly, burying a three-pointer with 48.6 on the clock to pull Virginia within two.
In the closing seconds, Burke made the first of two free throws to push NC State ahead 77-75, but Virginia's Crosby answered by driving the length of the court and laying it up for the tie. NC State's desperation heave came after the buzzer, sending the game to its third overtime.
Tied at 83-all in the third overtime, Breezy Williams made the go-ahead layup with 17 seconds left after a steal and outlet pass from Kastanek, but as the final horn sounded Paulisha Kellum's floater from straight away hit the backboard, rattled around the rim, and dropped in to tie the game at 85, sending it to a fourth overtime.
In the fourth and final overtime period, Kastanek's three with just under two minutes left pushed NC State's lead to 92-88. On the following possession, Virginia turned the ball over, giving the Pack a chance to seal the deal.
Kastanek drove the lane but had her shot blocked, leaving the door open, and Virginia scored on the next play to cut the Wolfpack's lead to 92-90 with 49 seconds remaining.
After Virginia's Crosby made a pair of free throws to tie the game at 92-92, Kastanek was whistled for a traveling violation with five seconds.
In the final 5.1 seconds, Moorer's off-balance jumper from 10 feet at the buzzer gave Virginia the 94-92 win.
NC State will try to bounce back February 13 in Atlanta against Georgia Tech, beginning at 5 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPN2.