Buzzer-beating layup lifts N. Illinois past No. 14 Buffalo

NIU Athletics

DEKALB, Ill. — Noah McCarty banked in a game-winning basket with 2 seconds to play, and Northern Illinois upset No. 14 Buffalo 77-75 on Tuesday night.

The Huskies reserve took a feed from Trendon Hankerson for the layup seconds after Buffalo had tied the game on a 3-pointer by C.J. Massinburg.

Dante Thorpe scored 23 points and Eugene German added 20 as Northern Illinois (11-8, 4-2 Mid-American Conference) ended a two-game skid and claimed its first home win over a ranked team since 1972.

Massinburg scored 23 points for the Bulls (17-2, 5-1 MAC), who saw their seven-game winning streak snapped. Jeremy Harris had 15 points, Nick Perkins added 12 and Jayvon Graves scored 10.

Northern Illinois’ last win over a ranked team anywhere was in 1973 over Oral Roberts at the Chicago Stadium. A year earlier, the Huskies beat No. 5 Indiana in DeKalb.

The Huskies led 73-66 with 1:26 remaining before Massinburg rallied Buffalo by scoring nine points in just over a minute, hitting two 3-pointers and making three free throws. Northern Illinois’ biggest lead was 10 points early in the second half.


Buffalo: The Bulls are ranked for the 11th straight week, tying a MAC record set by Bowling Green in the 1961-62 season. Buffalo was also the first MAC team to start 17-1 or better since Western Michigan opened 1975-76 with 19 consecutive victories.

Northern Illinois: German has now scored in double figures in 51 consecutive games and 64 of his 80 career appearances.


Buffalo concludes a two-game trip on Friday at Kent State, part of a run of five of seven games away from home.

Northern Illinois visits Akron on Saturday.