COLLEGE PARK, Md. – North Carolina State played excellent defense, never let down after falling into an early hole and staged a fine comeback in the second half.
Unfortunately that wasn’t enough to offset an uncharacteristically miserable offensive showing by the best-shooting team in the country.
Alex Len dropped in a missed shot by teammate Pe’Shon Howard with 00.9 seconds left, giving Maryland a stunning 51-50 victory over the 14th-ranked Wolfpack on Wednesday night.
Howard drove the left side and came up short on a 5-footer, but the 7-foot-1 Len grabbed the ball in front of the rim and eased it through the hoop. After the Wolfpack failed on a desperation heave at the other end, thousands of students in the sellout crowd poured onto the court after the final buzzer to mark Maryland’s first win over a ranked team since March 3, 2010, against No. 4 Duke.
Lorenzo Brown scored 17 points for N.C. State (14-3, 3-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) and C.J. Leslie had 13. The Wolfpack came in leading the NCAA with a 52.8 shooting percentage, but in this one they shot 31.1 percent.
“We were offensively pretty bad,” Coach Mark Gottfried said. “We bobbled balls, we had shots around the rim we couldn’t make and it wasn’t one guy. That was one of those nights.”
Coming off a win over then-No. 1 Duke, the Wolfpack trailed by 10 with 9:34 left before coming back.
(13) BUTLER 62, RICHMOND 47: Andrew Smith scored 15 points, Kellen Dunham added 11 and the Bulldogs (15-2, 3-0 Atlantic 10) used a stifling defense to pull away from the Spiders (11-7, 1-2) in Indianapolis.
(16) KANSAS ST. 67, TCU 54: Rodney McGruder scored 21 points as the Wildcats (14-2, 3-0 Big 12) stretched their winning streak to seven games by beating the Horned Frogs (9-8, 0-4) at Fort Worth, Texas.
(17) MISSOURI 79, GEORGIA 62: Earnest Ross scored 15 points while surviving two spills, helping the Tigers (13-3, 2-1 SEC) top the Bulldogs (6-10, 0-3) at Columbia, Mo.
(18) MICHIGAN ST. 81, PENN ST. 72: Adreian Payne scored 20 points after spending the first half on the bench following a morning scuffle with teammate Brandon Dawson, and the Spartans (15-3, 4-1 Big Ten) held on to beat the Nittany Lions (8-9, 0-5) at State College, Pa.
(25) MARQUETTE 69, SETON HALL 62: Reserve forward Davante Gardner scored 17 points to lead the Golden Eagles (13-3, 4-0 Big East) over the Pirates (12-6, 1-4) at Milwaukee.
GEORGETOWN: Forward Greg Whittington was declared academically ineligible.
Whittington ranks second on the team in points (12.1) and rebounds (7.0) per game.
DRAKE: Former Boston College point guard Jordan Daniels is transferring to Drake.
The 5-foot-9 Daniels averaged 6.4 points and 2.6 assists for the Eagles in 2011-12 while starting 25 games.
BOSTON UNIVERSITY 85, MAINE 54: Chantell Alford scored 21 points to lead the Terriers (15-3, 5-0) as they closed out the first half with a 20-6 run and cruised to an America East win over the Black Bears (1-16, 0-4) at Orono.
The Black Bears were paced by Liz Wood, who finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Ashleigh Roberts added 10 points for Maine.
(1) BAYLOR 90, KANSAS STATE 69: Brittney Griner scored 29 points as the Bears (15-1, 5-0) beat the Wildcats (10-7, 1-4) at Manhattan, Kan., for their 27th consecutive regular-season Big 12 victory.
(4) DUKE 58, VIRGINIA TECH 26: Elizabeth Williams scored 20 points as the Blue Devils (16-0, 5-0 ACC) routed the Hokies (7-10, 1-5) at Durham, N.C.
SAN DIEGO STATE: San Diego State is staying in the Mountain West and backing out on the Big East — just as Boise State did last month.