North Carolina State beats UNC Greensboro 58-52
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) North Carolina State nearly let a victory slip away.
Anthony Barber scored 27 points to help the Wolfpack beat UNC Greensboro 58-52 on Tuesday night.
Abdul-Malik Abu added 11 points and 11 rebounds for the Wolfpack (9-3), who held on after losing a 12-point lead late in the second half.
''Everybody makes a run, and we didn't let it get to us,'' Barber said. ''We stayed our ground and fought to the end.''
BeeJay Anya had 10 points for N.C. State, which shot 40 percent.
Diante Baldwin scored 13 points to lead the Spartans (4-8), who lost for the fifth time in six games. R.J. White had 11 points for UNCG.
Abu scored the go-ahead basket on a putback with 3:19 left to put the Wolfpack ahead 48-46.
Baldwin pulled UNCG within 50-49 on a free throw with 2:32 to play, but Caleb Martin made a 3-pointer on a feed from Barber to give the Wolfpack a four-point cushion.
UNCG shot just 34 percent from the floor, including 7 of 24 from 3-point range.
N.C. State built its lead to 41-29 with 8:36 remaining after strong play from Abu and Anya inside and Barber's shooting from the perimeter. Barber hit three jumpers off the dribble in span of 3:30 to put the Wolfpack up by 12.
The Spartans responded with a 17-5 spurt, scoring on seven of nine possessions. Baldwin led the charge with three baskets, including a driving layup that tied the game at 46 with 3:45 remaining.
''We got up 12, and I thought we took our foot off the gas pedal and let them right back in the game,'' N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried said.
The Wolfpack led 20-18 at halftime after an ugly first half in which both teams shot below 30 percent from the floor.
N.C. State had just one field goal in the final 7:56 of the half, missing seven of eight shots during that span. The Spartans scored just one point in the final 5:42, missing their final eight shots of the half.
''I thought for the most part we forced them into difficult shots, contested shots,'' UNCG coach Wes Miller said. ''That's what our defense is supposed to be about.''
UNC Greensboro: The Spartans were playing the third game of a five-game road swing. From Dec. 2 through Jan. 11, nine of their 11 games are on the road. . Senior Kayel Locke had five points on 2-of-8 shooting. In nine previous games against Atlantic Coast Conference competition, he averaged 15.8 points per game on 55-percent shooting from the field.
N.C. State: The Wolfpack improved to 12-1 under Gottfried against in-state competition outside of conference play. . Barber became the 49th player in program history to score 1,000 career points. He shot 10 of 18 (56 percent) from the floor while his teammates combined to shoot 11 of 34 (32 percent).
Martin's 3-pointer gave him his only points of the game. He finished 1 of 4 from the field in 34 minutes. ''For a guy who hadn't scored the whole night, he stepped up there with great courage and drilled a big-time 3 for us,'' Gottfried said.
In addition to assisting on Martin's 3-pointer, Barber added a driving layup, a jumper and two free throws in the final three minutes. The performance came six days after he made the game-winning 3-pointer in a 76-73 victory over High Point.
''My coaches and teammates rely on me to have the ball in my hands down the stretch,'' Barber said. ''I'm pretty much comfortable with it.''
UNC Greensboro visits No. 7 North Carolina on Monday.
N.C. State hosts Northeastern on Dec. 29.