Grantham leads No. 19 Tigers to 72-63 win over No. 18 Canes
CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — Donte Grantham had 18 points, including four 3-pointers, and Mark Donnal had 12 points, including two critical second-half 3s, as No. 19 Clemson outlasted 18th-ranked Miami 72-63 on Saturday.
The Tigers (15-2, 4-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) continued their best start in nine seasons and bounced back from their first ACC defeat that snapped a 10-game win streak at North Carolina State on Thursday night.
But Clemson used its timely, long-range shooting — a season-high 12 3-pointers — to hold on in the Top 25 matchup.
The game was tied at 44-all when Donnal, the graduate transfer from Michigan, struck for a tie-breaking 3. On Clemson’s next trip down, Donnal did it again with another from behind the arc to give Clemson a 50-44 edge with 9:56 to go.
Donnal had only seven 3s in his first 16 games coming in.
Miami kept things tight most of the way until the Tigers got hot from the outside once more.
Marcquise Reed’s 3-pointer with 1:41 left put Clemson ahead 63-57 and Grantham clinched things a possession later with the last of his 3s. Clemson opened up a 13-point lead in the final minute.
Anthony Lawrence II and Lonnie Walker IV had 16 points each for Miami (13-3, 3-2).
Reed had 16 points for Clemson, nine of those coming in the last 2 minutes.
When the horn sounded, Grantham raised his arms and urged on the cheers from the sort of full house that’s normally the case next door at football’s Death Valley.
It was the second straight game in double figures for Donnal, who had 13 in the Wolfpack loss.
Miami: The Hurricanes are loaded with lengthy, mobile players confident in driving to the basket and knowing what to do when they get there. Miami had 30 of its points in the paint. Also, 17 of their 37 rebounds came on the offensive glass, nearly double the nine Clemson had.
Clemson: The Tigers had a short turnaround from their first ACC loss of the season at North Carolina State on Thursday night to their Saturday afternoon contest. And they looked a bit out-of-step early as they fell behind 22-15. But Clemson rallied to close the half on a 19-8 run to lead 34-30 at the break.
Miami returns home to face No. 7 Duke on Monday night.
Clemson gets its latest chance to break its 0-for-58 mark in Chapel Hill when it goes to North Carolina on Tuesday night.