No. 25 Missouri beats NC State 68-64

No. 25 Missouri beats NC State 68-64

Credit: AP Photo

North Carolina State's Ralston Turner (22) drives the ball between Missouri's Earnest Ross, right, and Ryan Rosburg (44) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Raleigh, N.C., Saturday, Dec. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

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by AARON BEARD

AP

Posted on December 28, 2013 at 10:04 PM

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- Jabari Brown hit the go-ahead 3-pointer with 55.1 seconds left to help No. 25 Missouri beat North Carolina State 68-64 on Saturday night.

Brown's 3 over Wolfpack freshman Anthony "Cat" Barber was the biggest shot in a back-and-forth final 4 minutes that saw the teams trade the lead three times before Brown's shot made it 63-62.

Jordan Clarkson scored 21 points to lead the Tigers (11-1), including two free throws with 20.1 seconds left that pushed the lead to 65-62.

Brown finished with 17, helping Missouri hold on in its first true road game this year. Johnathan Williams hit a free throw with 3.7 seconds left to make it a two-possession game and effectively seal the win.

T.J. Warren scored 24 points to lead the Wolfpack (9-3), but didn't score for the final 12 minutes as N.C. State lost despite twice leading by 10 points.

Missouri hit five 3-pointers after halftime, the last two coming in the final 4 minutes. After N.C. State's Ralston Turner knocked down one to give N.C. State a 59-57 lead, Clarkson hit one over Tyler Lewis at the 2:55 mark to put Missouri back up. 60-59.

Turner, who had made just one shot through the first 36 minutes of the game, answered with another 3 that put the Wolfpack up 62-60 with 1:39 left. But Brown responded with the shot that would put Missouri in front for good.

Missouri was coming off its first setback, a 65-64 loss against Illinois in which the Illini hit two free throws with 4.6 seconds left to spoil the Tigers' perfect start.

As for N.C. State, the loss snapped a seven-game winning streak. It also looked unlikely considering how the Wolfpack controlled the action for much of the night and didn't trail until Clarkson's three-point play with 3:51 left.

There were plenty of things for the Wolfpack to regret after this one. In addition to Warren's quiet finish, Barber had a chance to put N.C. State back in front moments after Brown's 3 only to come up short on the front end of a 1-and-1 opportunity at the foul line with 26.8 seconds left.

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