Late bucket dooms Tigers in loss at Miami
|Wednesday, February 13, 2019, 9:04 PM-|
Miami’s Zach Johnson hit a stepback basket with 0.1 seconds remaining, and the Hurricanes upset Clemson 65-64 in Miami Wednesday night, breaking Clemson’s four-game winning streak in the league and dealing a blow to the Tigers’ NCAA Tournament hopes.
The Tigers fall to 15-9 overall and 5-6 in the ACC, while Miami improves to 11-13 overall and just 3-9 in the league.
DJ Vasiljevic scored 22 points and Chris Lykes added 21 to lead Miami. Marcquise Reed had 19 to lead Clemson, while Elijah Thomas added 16 and Shelton Mitchell 15. Clemson was 15-for-15 from the free throw line but an abysmal 3-for-19 from 3-point range.
Both teams struggled to score in the first half. Neither team held more than a 5-point lead through the first 20 minutes, with a free throw giving Miami an 11-6 lead midway through the half. Thomas and Sims helped lead the Tigers back, with Clemson going on a 10-5 run that tied the score at 16-16 with just over four minutes remaining in the half.
The teams traded baskets over the next few minutes, but with Clemson trailing 24-22 Mitchell hit a jumper from the right of the key to tie the score at 24-24 and then hit a jumper from the left side with two seconds remaining to give Clemson a 26-24 lead at intermission.
The Canes came out on fire in the second half. The Tigers took a quick 33-30 lead after a 3-pointer by Sims, but Miami went on a 13-0 run, punctuated by a 3-pointer by Vasiljevic that made it 43-33 with 14:36 remaining in the game.
Reed ended the run with a driving layup, and he was fouled on the play. He hit the free throw to make it 43-36, but Vasiljevic hit three 3-pointers in a short span to give Miami a 54-45 lead with 10:24 remaining. Clyde Trapp had a steal and hit a driving layup to end that run, and then Vasiljevic airballed a 3-pointer and Trapp hit Mitchell for a 3-pointer that made it 54-50 with 9:09 to play. Mitchell then hit a short one-hander in the lane that made it 54-52 after a 7-0 Clemson run over a 2:02 span.
Vasiljevic hit three free throws to give Miami a 61-56 lead at the 4:31 mark, but the Tigers came roaring back. Reed hit two free throws to make it 61-58, and Lykes hit a bucket on the other end that made it 63-58 2:48 to play.
Reed hit two more free throws to make it 63-60, and then Trapp got loose for a layup that made 63-62 with 2:01 to play. Reed followed that with two more free throws, and the Tigers were on a 7-0 run that made it 64-63 Clemson with just over a minute to play.
Reed missed a layup under the basket with 21 seconds to play, and Johnson hit his shot with 0.1 seconds remaining for the win.
Clemson travels to Louisville Saturday in a noon tip.