ACC Tournament Day 2
(8)Pitt 72 – (9)Syracuse 71
The Skinny: Pitt triumphs over Syracuse for the third time this season, but not before flirting with disaster. Pitt led by as many as 14 in the second half and 12 points with only 4:04 remaining in the game. They squandered the lead and nearly the game with turnovers and missed free throws, if not for some clutch play late from James Robinson. Cameron Johnson netted a career high 24 points for the Panthers.
The Quote: “The steal, the shot at the end, he (James Robinson) really took over and made the plays. That’s what Seniors you hope are going to do” – Pitt Coach Jamie Dixon
Key Stat: Buoyed by Cam Johnson and Ryan Luther, Pitt’s benched outscored Syracuse’s 39-10.
(5)Duke 92 – (12) NC State 89
The Skinny: A back and forth shootout went down to the wire in game two. Duke threatened to pull away late, taking a 9 point lead with little over five minutes to play. Not to be denied, the Wolfpack clawed all the way back tying the score at 89 with 1:36 left in regulation. After suffering a broken nose earlier in the game, Marshall Plumlee snared an offensive rebound then followed with a put back and one in the final minute that proved to be the final difference. Cat Barber led all scorers with 29 points.
The Quote: “Marshall (Plumlee) has been a great emotional leader for us all year long. We know how tough he is. We know he battled down there in the post. So to see him come in, he’s got blood dripping down his face, still out there yelling like a maniac, it fires the team up.” – Duke’s Grayson Allen
Key Stat: The final combined scoring output was the highest for an ACC tournament game since 1995.
(10) Georgia Tech 88 – (7) Clemson 85
The Skinny: Another game another large lead evaporating. For the third game in a row it came down to a frantic finish. Georgia Tech trailed Clemson by 18 points with 9:25 remaining in the game. The Yellow Jackets finally erased the deficit with 13 seconds left in regulation, tying the score at 80. Unlike the two earlier games though, the late rally did not go for not. Georgia Tech sealed the deal, pulling off the first upset of the ACC Tournament with an overtime victory. Marcus Georges-Hunt filled it up for 28 points.
The Quote: “I thought our guys really competed, played well. But it’s frustrating. We couldn’t get rebounds. They made a lot of free throws down the stretch. That was the difference.” -Clemson Coach Brad Brownell
Key Stat: Georgia Tech out rebounded Clemson 46-28. The Yellow Jackets also made 9 more free throws than Clemson. Georgia Tech went 22 of 29 from the line, while Clemson went only 13 of 19 from the charity stripe.
(6) Virginia Tech 96 – (11) Florida State 85
The Skinny: Those seeking defensive basketball need not apply here. For the third game in a row points were certainly not at a premium. Duke and NC State combined for the most points scored in an ACC Tournament game in 21 years. That game total was subsequently eclipsed in about 10 hours. However, this match lacked the late dramatics of the earlier games. Virginia Tech never trailed and was hardly pushed after breaking open a 15-15 tie with a 15-5 run in the first half. Seth Allen notched 20 points off the bench.
The Quote: “Nobody gave up or put their head down and said ‘Oh, the season’s over.’ We just kept fighting.”-Virginia Tech’s Seth Allen on their 6 game winning streak.
Key Stat: Virginia Tech lost the turnover and rebounding battle. They overcame this with a keen shooting advantage over Florida State. The Hokies shot 53% from the field to 41% for the Seminoles.