The NC State men’s basketball team won a thriller over in-state rival, North Carolina, Tuesday evening, defeating the 17th-ranked Tar Heels, 79-76, inside PNC Arena.
With the win, NC State improves to 5-1, 1-0 in the ACC while North Carolina drops to 5-3, 0-1 in the ACC.
Senior guard Devon Daniels led the Pack with 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting and added five rebounds while Manny Bates added 14 points on 7-of-11 shooting and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds while also blocking five shots.
Freshman Shakeel Moore had the finest performance of his young career as the Greensboro native came off-the-bench and scored 17 points on 6-of-11 shooting. It was Moore’s first career double-figure scoring game.
With the game tied at 15, Moore drained a three-pointer to give the Pack a lead it would never relinquish. Moore scored 10 consecutive points for the Pack, going on his own personal 10-2 run over the Tar Heels to give NC State a 25-17 lead with 12:17 to play.
His teammates took over what Moore started extending the run over the Tar Heels to 31-14 as the Pack built its largest lead of the game, 46-29, on two Thomas Allen free throws with 3:56 left in the half.
North Carolina dug in though, ending the half on a 13-3 run, to cut the Pack’s lead to 49-42 at the break.
In the second half, the Tar Heels cut NC State’s lead to a single possession six times in the first 12 minutes of the final period, but the Pack had a response every time.
A three-point play by Andrew Platek put UNC within one point, 63-62, with 8:36 remaining. Devon Daniels responded with a three-point play of his own, putting the Pack back up by four points with 8:21 to go.
Daniels three-point play was the start of a 14-2 run for the Pack as NC State pushed its lead back into double digits, 77-64, with 5:13 remaining.
North Carolina had one final run in it though as it held NC State scoreless for the next four minutes to go on a 9-0 spurt to get within 77-73 with 2:45 to play.
The Pack’s defense stiffened for the final 2:45 as Carolina would not hit a field goal the rest of the game.
NC State returns to action Wednesday, Dec. 30 when it hosts Boston College inside PNC Arena. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. and will be televised on the ACC Network.