N.C. Central claimed its first win over an Atlantic Coast Conference school on Wednesday night by knocking off the Wolfpack 82-72 in overtime.
"We're the underdog. We're always in the David and Goliath situation, and we're always David," coach LeVelle Moton said. "Fortunately, we just hit them with the stone this time."
Jeremy Ingram scored 11 of his 29 points in overtime, making up for a critical missed free throw late in regulation by scoring the first nine points of OT.
That helped the Eagles (3-1) — whose home gym is a few miles across Durham from Duke and didn't become a full Division I member until 2011-12 — deliver their first-ever win against an ACC team and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference's first win over the ACC since 2009.
Raleigh native Emanuel Chapman added a career-high 18 points before fouling out for the Eagles. They never trailed in the second half and were 41 of 45 from the free-throw line.
Anthony "Cat" Barber scored 18 of his 22 points after halftime for the Wolfpack, who never led after the first half but forced overtime on walk-on Patrick Wallace's 3-pointer with 2.7 seconds left — only to miss their first five shots of OT.
Ingram was 19 of 21 from the free-throw line, but one of those misses stung: He missed with 11.3 seconds to leave it at 63-60 and give the Wolfpack one last chance.
Barber dribbled into trouble and kicked out to Wallace, whose wide-open 3 from the corner tied it at 63.
"I was ready to shoot as soon as I got in the game, because that's what coach told me I have a jersey for," Wallace said. "But we lost, so it doesn't really matter."
That's because, once overtime started, Ingram took over.
He started it with two quick free throws, followed them with a 3-pointer from the left wing, added a drive down the lane and capped his personal 9-0 run with two more free throws with 2:18 left to make it 72-63.
"I felt like (the missed free throw) could have been the thing that lost the game," Ingram said. "So I just wanted to come out, really be aggressive and try to get us over the hump."
Karamo Jawara's foul shot with 1:28 remaining gave the Eagles a 74-63 lead and they pulled away from there.
Jawara and Alfonzo Houston each had 12 points for the Eagles, who improved to 1-13 against the ACC. The Eagles had lost their previous four meetings with N.C. State by an average of nearly 30 points.
T.J. Warren scored 13 points before fouling out and Desmond Lee finished with 12 before for the Wolfpack, who fell to 29-1 against MEAC schools and became the first ACC school to lose to one since Maryland fell to Morgan State in January 2009.
"Ever since we made this transition, we've been fighting for respect and it's really tough on Tobacco Road and in our own backyard to be mentioned with the big boys," Moton said. "Obviously so. They've earned their stripes."
Barber's layup with just less than 9 minutes gave the Wolfpack their first tie of the second half at 46-all. Lennard Freeman later made it 53-53 with his layup through contact with 3:29 left, but he missed the free throw that would have given N.C. State its first lead since midway through the first half.
The Eagles then ran off six straight points and went up 59-53 on Chapman's free throw with 1:33 left.
The new-look Wolfpack are replacing just about everyone from a group that reached the NCAA tournament for the second straight year under coach Mark Gottfried. With only three players back, N.C. State was picked 10th in the 15-team ACC.
Meanwhile, N.C. Central — the third-place pick in the low-major MEAC — had three seniors and two juniors in its starting lineup and led by as many as eight during a first half in which they got next to nothing from Ingram — who had just six points — and missed all nine of their 3-pointers.
"They're a veteran team. They played like a veteran team. Give them credit," Gottfried said. "I think we're going to get good. We're not there, obviously, right now."