Syndication: The Ames Tribune

Iowa State University Cyclones head coach T.J. Otzelberger reacts during the second half against IUPUI in the season opening home game at Hilton Coliseum Monday, Nov. 7, 2022, in Ames, Iowa. Photo by Nirmalendu Majumdar/Ames Tribune Ncaa Men S Basketball

Caleb Grill scored a game-high 31 points and Iowa State knocked off No. 1 North Carolina 70-65 at the Phil Knight Invitational on Friday in Portland, Ore.

Jaren Holmes added 22 for the Cyclones (5-0), who will play No. 20 UConn in the tournament championship on Sunday night. The Huskies beat the Crimson Tide 82-67 in the tournament semifinals on Friday.

R.J. Davis led North Carolina (5-1) with 15 points, Armando Bacot had 13 points with nine rebounds and Caleb Love scored 12.

Grill made the difference late for Iowa State with vital back-to-back jumpers.

First he hit a 3-pointer to tie the game at 61 with 2:25 remaining. Gabe Kalscheur then had a steal for Iowa State and set up a jumper for Grill to give the Cyclones the lead, 63-61.

Strong defense and solid work from the free-throw line then helped Iowa State ice the victory. Iowa State led 70-63 before a layup at the buzzer by North Carolina cut the final score to five points.

North Carolina's 3-point shooting made a difference in the loss. The Tarheels went 3 for 18 from beyond the arc, while Iowa State hit 9 of 20 and used long-range shooting to fuel the upset.

The Tar Heels looked like they were in a position to cruise multiple times, but they kept getting tracked down the Cyclones.

It was 47-47 with 7:58 remaining before North Carolina went on an 11-4 run to take a seven-point lead, but Iowa State battled back.

North Carolina led 30-21 during the first half after a layup by Davis. Iowa State then closed the half on a 11-4 run to make it a two-point game, 34-32, in North Carolina's favor at halftime.

Iowa State had reached the semifinal of the invitational with an 81-79 overtime victory against Villanova. North Carolina had dispatched Portland 89-81 in that same round.

--Field Level Media

Originally published on, part of the BLOX Digital Content Exchange.

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