DJ Funderburk scored 14 points, and short-handed North Carolina State survived a 10-minute, second-half scoring drought to beat Virginia 53-51 on Monday night in Charlottesville, Va.
C.J. Bryce added 13 points for the Wolfpack (14-5, 5-3 Atlantic Coast Conference), who have won three straight and four of their past five. They ended an eight-game losing streak against the Cavaliers (12-6, 4-4).
Funderburk, who fouled out with 6:48 remaining, made his first six shots and finished 6 of 8 from the floor. He has led the team in scoring in six of the past seven games.
Kihei Clark led Virginia with 10 points. The defending national champions have lost four of their past five and are 0-6 when trailing at halftime.
The Wolfpack broke open a close contest with an 11-2 run early in the second half, taking a 42-31 lead on a 3-pointer by Bryce with 13:45 remaining.
After Clark hit a driving layup with 17:50 left, the Cavaliers didn’t score again until Francisco Caffaro’s layup ended the drought with 11:12 to play.
NC State endured an even longer swoon after Bryce’s 3-pointer as Virginia surged ahead with 15 unanswered points. Jericole Hellems’ 3-pointer with 3:40 left finally ended the Wolfpack’s dry spell.
Markell Johnson’s 3-pointer put NC State back on top at 48-47 with 2:45 left, and buckets by Hellems and Bryce pushed the lead to 52-47 with 27 seconds to go.
After Clark made four free throws to get Virginia within 52-51, Devon Daniels made 1 of 2 at the line for NC State with 7.2 seconds left. Casey Morsell’s potential game-winning 3-pointer for the Cavaliers was off the mark at the buzzer.
The Wolfpack had only seven scholarship players available, as forwards Manny Bates (concussion) and Pat Andree (ankle) both sat out due to injuries sustained in NC State’s Saturday win over Clemson.
NC State took a 28-26 lead into the locker room after a tight first half that featured seven ties and seven lead changes, with neither side leading by more than four.
The Wolfpack made up for their 0-for-7 effort from 3-point range in the opening half with 10 points off six Virginia turnovers and 12 points on perfect 5-for-5 shooting by Funderburk. NC State committed only one turnover in the first half.
—Field Level Media