LEXINGTON, Va. — Francis Alonso scored 19 points and his free throws with 3.7 seconds left to play allowed defending Southern Conference regular-season champion North Carolina Greensboro to escape with a 63-61 win at VMI on Saturday.
Austin Vereen, who came on after halftime to score 11 of his 14 points, fired a last-gasp shot for VMI from just inside half-court, but the ball skipped off the front of the rim at the horn.
UNCG (11-4, 2-0) led by 13 with 12:33 remaining but lost all of it as the Keydets scrapped into a 57-55 lead eight minutes later when Fred Iruafemi hit two from the line.
Iruafemi fouled out on the next possession while defending Alonso, who made both free throws. The teams traded free throws and the lead in the last four minutes. Vereen hit a pair to lift VMI into a 61-61 tie with 25.7 seconds left. UNCG worked the clock down before finding Alonso on the wing.
James Dickey scored 14 for the Spartans, who made 7 of 10 3-pointers in the first half but were 0 of 14 in the second. Bubba Parham led VMI (5-9, 0-3) with 19.