ATLANTA -- Florida State won its first ACC tournament championship in school history here on Sunday with a 85-82 victory against North Carolina at Philips Arena.
Tar Heels freshman P.J. Hairston, whose three second-half 3-pointers helped UNC rally from a 14-point deficit, missed a long 3 at the final buzzer. Florida State players and coaches then rushed off their bench to storm the court to celebrate.
The third-seeded Seminoles controlled the first half and then twice led by as many as 14 points during the second. The No. 1 Tar Heels gradually chipped away at the lead, though, and finally cut FSUs lead to one point on Kendall Marshalls 3-pointer from the left side with 30.1 seconds to play.
After an FSU timeout, Marshall fouled the Seminoles Okaro White with 17.5 seconds to play, and he went to the free-throw line to attempt a one-and-one. White missed the shot.
On the other end, Marshall missed a 3-pointer with about seven seconds to play, and UNC then fouled Deividas Dulkys. He made both free throws to give the Seminoles a three-point lead with 3.9 seconds to play, setting up Hairstons miss at the other end.
With a victory, UNC would have been assured of a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. A loss, though, puts those hopes in some doubt. The tournament pairings will be announced later today, starting at 6 p.m.
Florida State held the lead on Sunday for all but seven seconds. Michael Snaer finished with 18 points to lead four FSU players in double figures. Harrison Barnes finished with a team-high 21 for the Tar Heels.