PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas — Bernard James thought Florida State was headed for a victory when Connecticut freshman Ryan Boatwright went to the line needing to make three free throws to tie it with seven seconds left.
"I was surprised he even got fouled," James said. "The refs don't usually make a call like that with the game on the line. I figured he'd miss at least one."
So much for that theory.
Boatwright made all three to force overtime and Shabazz Napier had 26 points, leading No. 4 Connecticut to a 78-76 victory over the No. 22 Seminoles in the consolation game of the Battle 4 Atlantis on Saturday.
Boatwright finished with 14 points and three assists in 33 minutes in his first college game.
"Fourteen points, three assists, 33 minutes of quickness and speed. Boatright makes the game easier for two great players, Napier and (Jeremy) Lamb," Seminoles coach Leonard Hamilton said.
"He had as much to do with the win as anyone else. He really stepped up and made those three big free throws."
Lamb added 19 points for Connecticut (6-1), which shot 48 percent from the field, including 11-of-25 from 3-point range. Freshman Andre Drummond had 12 points, 10 rebounds, seven blocks and three steals.
"I'm proud of our kids," Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun said. "Boatwright doesn't get much play, but he has an awful lot of courage. He didn't know if he was going to play (Saturday) or two months from now."
Michael Snaer scored 20 for FSU (5-2), which lost 46-41 to Harvard on Friday. Deividas Dulkys had 14 and James had 11 points and 14 rebounds.
James' three-point play gave the Seminoles a 76-75 lead in overtime, but Napier made his sixth 3-pointer of the game to put the Huskies back in front with 1:08 left.
Napier also had five assists, four rebounds and two steals one day after he committed seven turnovers and went 1-of-7 from the field in a 68-63 loss to Central Florida.
But Napier thought Boatwright provided the biggest lift for the Huskies.
"He was the missing piece of the puzzle we needed," he said. "To have him beside me is the best I can hope for. We rode the boat today."
FSU's Luke Loucks, the former Clearwater High standout, missed a 3-point attempt and two free throws in the final minute of OT, and Snaer missed a 3 at the buzzer.
"It's a shot I feel I would normally have made," Snaer said. "I had a pretty good look but couldn't finish it."