Virginia Tech players hug Darius Maddox (C) to celebrate his overtime game-winning 3-pointer against Clemson in the second round of the 2022 ACC tournament Wednesday at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Photo by Virginia Tech Athletics
March 10 (UPI) -- Sophomore guard Darius Maddox sank a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to give Virginia Tech a dramatic overtime win over Clemson in the second-round of the ACC basketball tournament and lift the Hokies' NCAA tournament hopes.
Maddox's heave resulted in a 76-75 Hokies victory Wednesday at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Maddox totaled eight points. Keve Aluma led the Hokies with a game-high 19 points and 10 rebounds.
Wednesday's game featured 14 lead changes and was tied five times. The Hokies outscored the Tigers 23-15 off the bench and made 42.9% of their 3-point attempts.
They battle Notre Dame in the quarterfinals Thursday in Brooklyn. The Hokies (20-12) are among the teams fighting to improve their resume for eligibility into the 68-team Division I tournament, which starts Tuesday.
The lead exchanged hands several times in the first half of Wednesday's matchup. The Hokies then took control with an 11-point advantage 4:30 before halftime and took a 43-32 lead into the break.
Aluma made a 3-pointer for the first points of the second half, which pushed the Hokies lead to 14. The Tigers answered much later when they used a 14-3 run to snag a 62-61 edge with 73 seconds left in regulation.
Justyn Mutts put the Hokies ahead 63-62 with a layup on the next possession. Hunter Tyson answered with a go-ahead layup for the Tigers 13 seconds later.
Storm Murphy hit a 3-pointer for the Hokies for a two-point edge with 19 seconds remaining, but P.J. Hall forced overtime with a jump shot on the next possession.
Aluma made another 3-pointer to give the Hokies a 69-66 lead two minutes into the bonus period. Clemson's Al-Amir Dawes answered with a game-tying trey 12 seconds later. Hall pushed the Tigers lead to two points with a free throw with six seconds remaining, which set up Maddox's final effort.
Hokies guard Nahiem Alleyne started the play with an inbound pass to Maddox. Maddox caught the feed and dribbled up the left flank.
He crossed half-court and followed with a front-side, cross-over dribble, followed by a behind-the-back move. He then jabbed left and launched a shot, which dropped through the net just after the buzzer sounded.
Hokies players then stormed the court to celebrate their teammate's heroics.
Maddox made 3 of 6 field goal attempts and 2 of 3 attempts from 3-point range. Murphy totaled 15 points for the Hokies. Hall paced the Tigers with a team-high 16 points.
Virginia Tech faces Notre Dame at 7 p.m. EST Thursday on ESPN2. The winner battles North Carolina or Virginia in the semifinals. The winner of the ACC tournament title game earns an automatic bid into the 2022 Division I men's basketball tournament.
The NCAA tournament field will be announced during the Selection Show at 6 p.m. EST Sunday on CBS.