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Grant's two late free throws lift North Carolina State past Villanova

Nov 26, 2007 - 4:50 AM LAKE BUENA VISTA, Florida (Ticker) -- Gavin Grant's two free throws with four-tenths of a second left gave North Carolina State a wild 67-66 upset victory over No. 19 Villanova in the Old Spice Classic championship on Sunday.

Dante Cunningham seemed to be the hero when he scored on a follow shot off Corey Stokes' missed layup with under three seconds to play, giving Villanova a 66-65 lead.

However, Cunningham fouled Grant on a 3-point attempt with under one second to play after the N.C. State guard caught a full-court inbounds pass.

Grant missed the first free throw, but sank the next two for the 14th and final lead change of the second half.

Courtney Fells led the Wolfpack (4-1) with 21 points, while freshman J.J. Hickson and Grant had 15 points each.

Villanova (4-1) freshman Corey Fisher scored 14 of his 21 points in the second half, while Cunningham added 16 points and eight rebounds.

Scottie Reynolds, who scored 40 points in the Wildcats' previous two wins in the tournament, netted 13 on just 4-of-12 shooting. The reigning Big East Freshman of the Year was just 1-of-6 after halftime, mustering just three points after the break.

Villanova was hurt by shooting 8-of-18 from the free-throw line and just 2-of-12 from the arc.

The Wolfpack ended the first half on an 11-0 run - powered by eight from Fells - to take a 38-33 advantage at the break.

N.C. State shot 61 percent (14-of-23) to help overcome 16 turnovers in the first half.

With the game tied at 64-64, Reggie Redding scored a layup with 1:34 to play, giving the Wildcats a two-point lead.

After Hickson answered with a layup of his own to tie the game, Redding committed a loose ball foul with 20 seconds to go, and Farnold Degand made one of two free throws to give N.C. State a one-point advantage.

Villanova outrebounded the Wolfpack, 26-15, in the second half - including 14 offensive rebounds.