Leap Day–February 29, 2012–a day of basketball for the ACC.
The big game of the day was the matchup between two bubble teams–North Carolina State and Miami. Ultimately, the Wolfpack successfully defended its home court and kept its March hopes alive by defeating the Hurricanes, 77-73. However, Miami led at the half by two points and this win did not come easily by any stretch. Rion Brown came off the bench to lead Miami with 15 points, while Malcolm Grant added 14. The Hurricanes dropped to 8-7 in conference play and 17-11 overall. CJ Leslie was the big star for North Carolina State, scoring 21 points and grabbing 11 rebounds. Lorenzo Brown added 16 for the Wolfpack, who improved to 8-7 in conference play and 19-11 overall.
How about a little credit to Boston College? With nothing but pride to play for–and nothing to play for in many months in fact–the Eagles defeated Georgia Tech, 56-52, for yet another conference win. Boston College was led by Matt Humphrey with 13 points and Ryan Anderson with 10 points. Daniel Miller led Georgia Tech with 13 points. With the loss, Georgia Tech drops to 10-19 overall and 3-12 in conference play. With the win, Boston College improves to 9-20 overall, but also to 4-11 in conference play. That’s just enough to get the Eagles out of last place in the ACC standings.
And the Confidential will throw some credit to Pittsburgh too. The season has been a disappointment, but senior Ashton Gibbs led Pittsburgh to an 89-69 home win over St. Johns in the regular season home finale. Gibbs scored 19 points and Dante Taylor added 17. With the win, the Panthers moved to 16-14 overall and 5-12 in conference play. A bright spot in an otherwise gloomy season.
Nothing gloomy for North Carolina. The #6 Tar Heels improved to 26-4 by handily defeating Maryland, 88-64, in the final home game of the year. Senior Tyler Zeller went out in style, scoring 30 points and grabbing 8 rebounds in his home finale. Josh Henson added 19 points and 9 rebounds, while Kendall Marshall dished out 8 assists. North Carolina’s defense held ACC leading scorer Terrell Stoglin to 4 for 18 shooting, although he finished with 16 points. Nick Faust led the Terps with a career-high 17 points. With the loss, Maryland drops to 16-13 overall and 6-9 in conference play.
After these games, here are the updated ACC Standings:
|North Carolina State||8-7||19-11|