College basketball: Markell Johnson and Devon Daniels help NC State beat No. 7 Auburn 78-71

North Carolina State’s Markell Johnson (11) drives against Auburn’s Chuma Okeke (5) during the first half.
(Ben McKeown / Associated Press)

Markell Johnson had career highs of 27 points and five 3-pointers to help North Carolina State upset No. 7 Auburn 78-71 on Wednesday night.

Devon Daniels scored all 15 of his points after halftime for the Wolfpack (10-1), who led nearly all night before pushing ahead for good in the final 10 minutes.

N.C. State shot 58 percent after halftime behind Johnson and Daniels. Johnson stood out with 19 points after the break, including a run of 10 straight points — a 3-pointer, a four-point play and pullup 3 in transition — during one critical 75-second sequence.

By the time Daniels scored twice followed by Johnson’s layup, the Wolfpack had pushed the lead to a dozen near the four-minute mark on the way to another big upset under second-year coach Kevin Keatts.


J’Von McCormick scored 14 points for the Tigers (9-2), who shot 48 percent but committed a season-high 25 turnovers.

at No. 3 Tennessee 83, Samford 70: Jordan Bone set career highs with 24 points and 11 assists, and No. 3 Tennessee beat Samford 83-70 for its fifth consecutive victory.

Bone shot 11 of 16 and committed only two turnovers. Admiral Schofield scored 18 points and Grant Williams had 13 of his 16 points after halftime to help the Volunteers (9-1) snap Samford’s three-game winning streak. Kyle Alexander added 10 points.

Ruben Guerrero had 16 points and eight rebounds before fouling out for Samford (10-3). Kevion Nolan scored 13 points, Myron Gordon had 12 and Josh Sharkey added 10.

No. 5 Virginia 69, at South Carolina 52: Ty Jerome had a season-high 25 points and No. 5 Virginia added to its perfect start with a victory over South Carolina.

The Cavaliers improved to 10-0 for the first time since they opened with 19 straight wins on their way to the Atlantic Coast Conference title for the 2014-15 season. They showed off their usual stout defense while sending the Gamecocks (4-6) to their third straight loss — and second in a row to a No. 5 team after falling at then fifth-ranked Michigan on Dec. 8.

Kyle Guy had 18 points for Virginia, and Mamadi Diakite finished with 10. Chris Silva led South Carolina with 11 points.

at No. 11 Florida State 95, North Florida 81: Mfiondu Kabengele scored a career-high 24 points and No. 11 Florida State pulled away for a win against North Florida.

Kabengele made 7 of 12 shots from the floor, 10 of 10 free throws and pulled down seven rebounds as Florida State (10-1) earned its fifth straight victory. Terance Mann had 17 points, including several alley-oop dunks, as the Seminoles dominated inside. They finished with 64 points in the paint.

J.T. Escobar, who played at Maclay School and Florida A&M High in Tallahassee, had 27 points for North Florida (5-8). He went 6 for 6 from 3-point range.

at No. 13 Virginia Tech 82, North Carolina A&T 60: Nickeil Alexander-Walker scored 12 of his 20 points in the second half, and No. 13 Virginia Tech beat North Carolina A&T for its fifth consecutive victory.

The Hokies (10-1) went 15 for 17 at the free-throw line and enjoyed a 42-20 rebounding advantage over the Aggies. Kerry Blackshear Jr. had 17 points and nine rebounds, and Justin Robinson finished with 14 points, seven boards and six assists.

Quavius Copeland scored 16 points for North Carolina A&T (4-7), and Milik Gantz had 14. The Aggies finished with 14 turnovers.

at No. 17 Mississippi State 98, Wofford 87: Lamar Peters and Aric Holman each scored 19 points, and No. 17 Mississippi State beat Wofford for its seventh consecutive win.

The Bulldogs (10-1) rallied from a 12-point deficit early in the second half. Quinndary Weatherspoon made 14 of 15 foul shots on his way to 18 points, and Nick Weatherspoon and Reggie Perry each had 12 points for the Bulldogs.

Fletcher Magee scored 24 points for Wofford (9-4), and Cameron Jackson finished with 20. Nathan Hoover had 15 points for the Terriers in their first-ever meeting with Mississippi State.

at No. 22 Indiana 86, Central Arkansas 53: Devonte Green scored 19 points, freshman Romeo Langford recorded his second double-double and No. 22 Indiana beat Central Arkansas.

The Hoosiers (10-2) have won five straight, though this was their first victory by more than three points during the streak. They’ve also won eight straight home games. Langford had 18 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.

Hayden Koval had 16 points as the Bears (4-7) lost their fourth game to a power-conference team this season. Central Arkansas, Scottie Pippen’s alma mater, is 0-7 against Big Ten teams since joining Division I in 2006-07.



Cal Baptist 79, at Southern 76: Milan Acquaah had 25 points and eight rebounds, and De’jon Davis had 16 points and nine rebounds for the Lancers (7-5), who shot 61% from the field. Aaron Ray scored 21 points for the Jaguars (1-11).

UC Irvine 52, at Eastern Michigan 48: Robert Cartwright made a three-point basket with 11.3 seconds to play and the Anteaters (11-2) won their 10th consecutive road game, tying Virginia for the longest active streak in Division I.

at Nebraska Omaha 85, UC Santa Barbara 74: Ar’Mond Davis had a game-high 26 points for the Gauchos (8-3), who got as close as 58-46 with 13:14 to play but were never able to crack into the double-figure lead by the Mavericks (5-7).

at New Mexico State 92, Cal State Northridge 57: Lamine Diane had 25 points and 10 rebounds, and Terrell Gomez scored 16 points for the Matadors (3-8), who were out- rebounded 40-25 by the Aggies (9-2).

at Loyola Marymount 70, Boise State 69: James Batemon made a layup with one second remaining for a game-high 30 points to lift the Lions (11-1), who are off to their best 12-game start. RJ Williams scored 21 points for the Broncos (4-7).

at UC Riverside 87, Life Pacific 50: Ajani Kennedy had 13 points to lead six Highlanders (4-8) in double figures. Colin Cunniff had 31 points for the Warriors (6-6), who play in the NAIA.


UCLA 78, at Illinois Chicago 47: Michaela Onyenwere had 19 points and 11 rebounds, Lajahna Drummer scored 16 points and the Bruins (6-5) cruised after starting the game on a 12-0 run. Brittany Byrd had 21 points for the Flames (2-7).

at No. 23 Texas A&M 71, USC 51: Desiree Caldwell had 10 points for the Trojans (9-1), who shot 30% from the field. Kayla Wells had a career-high 26 points and N’dea Jones had 17 rebounds for the Aggies (9-2).