Clemson’s ACC Tournament misery has another chapter. The 6th seeded Tigers fell to 11th seeded NC State Thursday night 59-57 in the final game of the first day of play in Greensboro. It’s the fourth time in five years the Tigers have lost their first game in the tournament. Clemson’s alltime ACC Tournament record is now 16-57. Clemson remains the only original member of the ACC to never win the tournament. This was Clemson’s 57th appearance.
AUDIO: Clemson post game news conference with Oliver Purnell and Trevor Booker
The Tigers shot just 39% for the game to State’s 52%. The Wolfpack took the lead at 7-5 and never relinquished it. It was a four point game at halftime and State led by 10 with 12:54 to play. The Tigers got to within three points twice and trailed by two after Demontez Stitt’s three pointer with :06 to play. The Tigers fouled Julius Mays with :02 to play and he missed the front end of the one-and-one, but Tracy Smith got the rebound for State and the clock ran out on the Tigers.
AUDIO: Oliver Purnell
Booker led the Tigers with 17 points and 8 rebounds. But he was just 2-8 from the line and he committed 5 turnovers. Noel Johnson gave the Tigers a spark off the bench hitting four three pointers for 12 points. Smith led State with 19 points. He also had 8 rebounds. State outrebounded the Tigers 34-25.
AUDIO: Trevor Booker
The loss drops Clemson to 21-10. The Tigers will return home to await their NCAA Tournament assignment. State improves to 18-14 and will play Florida State Friday night. The other games on Friday will be Virginia against Duke, Miami against Virginia Tech, and Georgia Tech against Maryland.
AUDIO: Demontez Stitt