CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — DJ Vasiljevic wouldn't let an off night shake his confidence, not with the game in the balance for Miami.
Vasiljevic hit a tie-breaking 3-pointer with 59 seconds to go in overtime as the Hurricanes rallied from 10-points down to win its fifth straight with a 73-68 victory over Clemson on Tuesday.
Chris Lykes had 27 points, 18 of those after halftime, for Miami (9-3, 1-1 Atlantic Coast Conference).
Vasiljevic, who came in shooting 51% from the floor this season, was just 3 of 10 against the Tigers — and made just one of his four long-range attempts — when he let fly with the game-changing shot.
“They were playing me pretty tight," Vasiljevic said. “I practice shots in practice and on my own. I had confidence in myself and just wanted to get out of here with a win."
Miami, 0-11 last year in true road games, already has its third in as many chances this year.
Vasiljevic understands it's early in league play. He believes, though, the Hurricanes have the makeup to surprise many this season.
“I think we're on the right track," he said. “A lot of guys are locked in as we said before the game, it's ACC time, we've got to go out there and compete."
The Hurricanes had to come back from trailing 55-45 with nine minutes left. They still trailed 68-66 on Johnny Newman's inside bucket with 1:56 to play in the extra session.
But Lykes hit two foul shots and, after a Clemson turnover, Vasiljevic drained the long-range bucket to put Miami ahead to stay.
The Tigers (6-7) missed three 3-pointers down the stretch after Vasiljevic's go-ahead basket to start ACC play 0-3 for the second straight season.
“We're not making enough smart plays basketball-wise," Clemson coach Brad Brownell said. “It hurt us."
Vasiljevic hit a pair of clinching foul shots with 1.7 seconds to go.
Lykes ended a point shy of his career high and made several critical baskets.
His driving, one-handed layup around Aamir Simms — Lykes at 5-foot-7 is 13 inches shorter than Simms — tied things at 62 with 49.1 seconds left that led to overtime.
The Hurricanes trailed 55-45 after Simms' inside bucket with 8:55 to play.
Miami came out firing — and hitting — after that. Kameron McGusty got things going with bucket and Lykes followed with a 3-pointer and another jumper.
Moments later, Lykes hit another long-range shot to tie the game at 57 and set up the dramatic ending stretch.
Vasiljevic and McGusty both had 15 points for Miami.
Clemson has struggled to score this season and hasn't reached 70 points in its last eight games. But the Tigers came out hot, making seven of their first 14 shots to lead the Hurricanes 19-11.
That's when Miami got going behind Vasiljevic, who had a three-point play and a long 3-pointer to start a 9-0 run that got his team the lead.
Vasiljevic and Chris Lykes both made baskets in the final two minutes to send the game to the half tied at 26.
Simms led the Tigers with 21 points.
Miami: The Hurricanes showed plenty of guts in coming back on Clemson. Lykes is a dynamic force who should continue to push Miami in the ACC.
Clemson: It's hard to see the Tigers even reaching their preseason spot of 11th in the ACC unless they find ways to score more consistently. Clemson missed six of eight shots in overtime.
CHANGE OF FORTUNE
Miami was just 4-3 after losing two of three games at the Charleston Classic in November. It has not lost since and Hurricanes coach Jim Larranaga knows the reason — forward Keith Stone. The senior returned against Illinois on Dec. 2 and Miami has been a different, better group, Larranaga said.
“Once we got him, then our rotations were a little bit better," the coach said. “Having three seniors to work (in the middle) has made a significant difference defensively."
Clemson junior Clyde Trapp Jr. started for the first time this season since returning from an ACL injury suffered last summer. Trapp finished with a season-high 13 points and five rebounds. Trapp's presence should bring stability to the backcourt after freshman Al-Amir Dawes was pressed into service at the point.
Miami returns home to play No. 2 Duke on Saturday.
Clemson closes a five-game home stand when it faces North Carolina State on Saturday.
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