Johnson’s second half binge helps Wolfpack advance in NIT

UNC Greensboro also won its first round game while Campbell and Davidson were eliminated from the postseason tournament

Braxton Beverly (10) celebrates with NC State teammate Markell Johnson after their 84-78 win against Hofstra in the first round of the NIT on Tuesday (Ethan Hyman/The News & Observer via AP)

  RALEIGH (AP) — Markell Johnson scored 20 of his 26 points in the second half Tuesday as NC State defeated Hofstra 84-78 in the first round of the NIT before a raucous crowd of 5,500 at Reynolds Coliseum.

  Johnson tied a school NIT scoring record set by Hawkeye Whitney in the 1978 tournament championship game while leading the Wolfpack back from a three-point halftime deficit.

  Torin Dorn added 19 points and nine rebounds for the Wolfpack while C.J. Bryce contributed 18 points and 11 boards to help State (23-11) advance to a home second round matchup against Georgetown or Harvard.

  Justin Wright-Foreman had 29 points and six rebounds to lead Hofstra (27-8). Jacquil Taylor added 14 points and four blocks.

  Led by Johnson, State came out hot in the second half to turn its 42-39 deficit into a nine-point lead with 7:55 remaining. The Pride wouldn’t go away, though. The visitors from Long Island battled back to within two in the final two minutes before Johnson scored the Wolfpacks final six points to put the game away.

  Although State had its problems shooting from the perimeter, going just 6 of 23 from 3-point range, coach Kevin Keatts’ team made up the difference on the glass. The Wolfpack outrebounded the Pride 49-32 and scored 29 second chance points to only nine for Hofstra.

UNC Greensboro 84, Campbell 69

  GREENSBORO (AP) — Isaiah Miller scored 25 points, tying his career high, as UNC Greensboro defeated Campbell 84-69 in the first round of the NIT on Tuesday night. Francis Alonso added 22 points for the Spartans.

  Demetrius Troy had 14 points for UNCG (29-6). Kyrin Galloway added nine rebounds and three blocks.

  Chris Clemons had 32 points for the Fighting Camels (20-13). Isaac Chatman added 13 points. Andrew Eudy had 12 points and three assists.

  Clemons, the nation’s leading scorer, became the first player since 1997 to average more than 30 points in a season. He finished the year with an average of 30.1 points per game.

  The 5-foot-9 senior also moved past LaSalle’s Lionel Simmons to become the No. 3 all-time scorer in NCAA Division I history. Clemons ends his  college career with 3,225 points, more than anyone else besides LSU’s Pete Maravich and Portland State’s Freeman Williams.

Lipscomb 89, Davidson 81

  DAVIDSON (AP) — Michael Buckland had 17 points and Rob Marberry posted 17 points as Lipscomb defeated Davidson 89-81 in the first round of the NIT on Tuesday night.

  Garrison Mathews had 14 points and seven rebounds for Lipscomb (26-7). Ahsan Asadullah added 10 points.

  Kellan Grady scored a season-high 31 points and had seven rebounds for the Wildcats (24-10). Luke Frampton added 19 points. Luka Brajkovic had 15 points.