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Hurricanes crumble with ACC title within grasp

CORAL GABLES — The party favors were ready. Scissors were stashed away and confetti ready to fall.

But Georgia Tech wasn't there for a party. Instead, the Yellow Jackets ruined Miami's.

Marcus Georges-Hunt followed his own miss with the winning tip-in at the buzzer Wednesday night, and Georgia Tech rallied past the No. 6 Hurricanes 71-69 to prevent Miami from clinching the outright ACC title.

The Hurricanes (23-6, 14-3), who squandered a 13-point lead in the second half, lost for the third time in four games and fell to 13-1 at home. They can still clinch the championship outright by winning their regular-season finale at home against Clemson on Saturday.

Entering with a 5-11 league record, the Yellow Jackets had lost three of four. Miami had some momentum after a narrow 79-76 loss at No. 3 Duke on Saturday.

All was in line for Miami, a 13½-point favorite, to cruise into the history books.

Instead, the less-than-capacity crowd will have to wait until Saturday to potentially celebrate. Georgia Tech (16-13, 6-11) beat a ranked team for the first time since March 2010. It was its first over a top-10 team on the road since 2004.

Georges-Hunt drove into the lane and threw up a one-hander over Kenny Kadji that bounced off the rim. Georges-Hunt and Robert Carter both appeared to get a hand on the rebound, and the tip-in was credited to Georges-Hunt for only his second basket of the game. Officials had to consult the monitor, but the shot clearly beat the buzzer.

A wild celebration from the Georgia Tech sideline echoed through the slack-jawed BankUnited Center. A few hours earlier, the scene was unthinkable.

The postgame celebration was well planned out. The postgame video montage culminating in the ACC championship logo played as Kadji got loose more than 90 minutes before tip-off. He stopped, watched and smiled as the news clips led up to the finale.

Chris Bolden scored 16 of his 21 after halftime as the Yellow Jackets slowly dug into the Miami lead. He and Carter combined to hit three 3s in a 2:20 span that cut the lead to 60-56.

VILLANOVA 67, NO. 5 G'TOWN 57: JayVaughn Pinkston had 20 points to help the host Wildcats stun the Hoyas (23-5, 13-4 Big East) and beat a top-five team for the third time this season, boosting their NCAA Tournament resume.

NO. 7 MICHIGAN 80, PURDUE 75: Trey Burke had 26 points and five rebounds for the visiting Wolverines (25-5, 12-5 Big Ten), who rallied for their fourth win in five games to remain in the race for a share of the conference title.

NO. 12 NEW MEXICO 75, NEVADA 62: Tony Snell had 25 points for the visiting Lobos (26-4, 13-2 MWC), who won their sixth straight.

IOWA ST. 87, NO. 13 OKLA. ST. 76: Senior Will Clyburn scored 20 for the host Cyclones, who bolstered their NCAA Tournament hopes by holding off the Cowboys (22-7, 12-5 Big 12), their second victory over a ranked team this season.

XAVIER 77, NO. 16 ST. LOUIS 66, OT: Travis Taylor had 19 points and a career-high 19 rebounds for the host Musketeers, who never trailed in overtime and snapped an 11-game winning streak by the Billikens (23-6, 12-3 Atlantic 10).

NO. 17 SYRACUSE 78, DEPAUL 57: Brandon Triche and James Southerland combined for 37 points in the final home game of their careers, and the Orange (23-7, 11-6 Big East) snapped a three-game losing streak, including two straight at the Carrier Dome.

NO. 21 VCU 93, RICHMOND 82: Treveon Graham scored 15 of his 21 in the second half, including the go-ahead basket with 2:58 left, and the host Rams (24-6, 12-3 Atlantic 10) rallied against their city rival to avoid a sweep of the season series.

WASH. ST. 73, NO. 23 UCLA 61: Brock Motum had 20 points and 11 rebounds as the last-place Cougars snapped a 19-game home losing streak to the Bruins (22-8, 12-5 Pac-12) that extended to 1993.

UCF 74, UAB 70: Isaiah Sykes had 21 points, 11 rebounds and five assists for the visiting Knights (20-10, 9-6 C-USA), who won for the third time in four games.

SSC TOURNEY: Anthony Griffis had 26 points as Tampa beat Lynn 74-49 in the first round at Silver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee. The ninth-seedeed Spartans face top-seeded Saint Leo at 2:30 p.m. Friday.

NO. 8 LOUISVILLE: Coach Rick Pitino said he is "98 percent" certain Gorgui Dieng will declare for the NBA draft, and the junior center will participate in Senior Day festivities Saturday against Notre Dame.


NO. 16 DELAWARE 86, GEORGIA ST. 58: Elena Delle Donne had 24 points, Danielle Parker reached 1,000 career rebounds and the host Blue Hens (26-3, 17-0 CAA) scored the first 16 and set a school record with their 22nd consecutive victory.

NO. 25 TOLEDO 63, BALL ST. 39: Yolanda Richardson had 14 points and 16 rebounds and Naama Shafir also had 14 points to lead the host Rockets (27-2, 15-1 MAC).

NO. 9 TENNESSEE: Sophomore center Isabelle Harrison is doubtful for this week's SEC tournament because of an injured right knee.

Hurricanes crumble with ACC title within grasp 03/06/13 [Last modified: Thursday, March 7, 2013 12:28am]
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