Then it hung on for dear life. The game was not over by press time.
"We'll go certain time periods where we don't score and they score, or we're not playing too well", Duval said. Those outcomes give North Carolina a shot to force its way into consideration for a No. 1 seed if it upsets top-seeded Virginia in Saturday's ACC title game.
Luke Maye scored 17 points, including North Carolina's last field goal with 5:33 remaining, and the 12th-ranked Tar Heels held off a rally by No. 5 Duke for a 74-69 victory Friday night in the ACC semifinals.
"As I recall, we kept playing". We were just sloppy. "Why can't we find someplace warm to play this sucker?"
At this time a year ago, eight-loss Duke won the ACC tournament, and some made a case for the Blue Devils to leap to the top seed line. UNC won in 2016 as the top seed, beating Virginia in the final. "We're fine; we're going to get through this".
Senior Ja'Quan Newton totaled 17 points and seven rebounds for UM, while Anthony Lawrence II added 12 points. No. 2 scorer Greyson Allen is averaging 15.5 points, 4.5 assists and 1.6 steals in a team-leading 34.7 minutes a night. Not only would the Tar Heels have more than twice as many quadrant 1 victories as Duke or Xavier, the quality of those wins would be superior.
With no pressure on its shoulders, Virginia is expected to play loose against a North Carolina team with everything on the line. Rarely has Krzyzewski had to so recalibrate and scale down his demands, typified by the zone defense they play out of necessity. That's one thing we don't have to worry about. "We have good size, and they're relentless the way they play, and that's the way we have to play to be good". It'll be a fun matchup of a Virginia team who has been great all season and a rejuvenated Tar Heels team. In each of the three games in this tournament, however, they've limited their opponents to 41 percent shooting or worse. But he wasn't almost as dominant as he was during the second half of that game in Durham seven days earlier. Coach Roy Williams wore a navy blue suit with a Carolina blue ribbon pinned to his lapel.
"It was a sad day for all of us because I lost a friend, but we lost a guy who's a legend in North Carolina basketball", Williams said. It was the Tar Heels' first victory against the Blue Devils in the tournament since 1998. Against UNC, they shot a combined 7 for 25.
Duke has been led by likely lottery pick Marvin Bailey III. "Everybody likes talent, and I do, too", Williams said. "I wouldn't say they played into our hands by doing that. We just tried to battle as best we could".
The Blue Devils were the standard-bearers of the one-and-done-rule, Marvin Bagley leading a quartet of freshmen who are using Duke as their lily-pad on the way to the National Basketball Association.
And of course, the incident involved Grayson Allen. He's been a special player for the Tar Heels since the first time he stepped on the court in 2014. Brooks was OK and made two free throws with 52.7 second left.
"We were right there, and when you fight back to bring it that close, you often think back to why you got down in the first place", Allen said.
The disparity in styles is nearly as wide as you can get. You just can't stop.
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