The North Carolina Tar Heels traveled to Raleigh, North Carolina to take on the North Carolina State Wolfpack. The Tar Heels came into the game on Joe Lunardi’s last four byes in regards to the bubble. Needing to solidify their season, they took care of business, beating the Wolfpack, 84-74.
With many believing that ACC was going to get a max of four teams into the NCAA Tournament, some didn’t know where the Tar Heels fall. This win for UNC puts them in third in the ACC Basketball Standings, 1.5 games behind Duke. The loss for the Wolfpack pushes them to dead last in the conference, with a 4-14 ACC record.
North Carolina Uses Big First Half to Beat NC State
Brady Manek, Armando Bacot and Puff Johnson were just three Tar Heels who helped to ruin the Wolfpack’s senior night. The trio combined for 60 points, with 28 of them coming from Bacot. The junior forward added another 18 rebounds and five blocks.
The Tar Heels quickly jumped out to a 20-5 lead. The lead eventually grew to 17 at the end of the first half. In the previous matchup between the teams, Carolina led by 25 at the break.
NC State opened the second half on a 6-0 run, with baskets from Terquavion Smith and Ebenezer Bowuona. North Carolina instantly responded with a 10-0 run of their own. The Wolfpack outscored the Tar Heels the rest of the way, going on a 39-28 run to drop the game by 10.
Moving forward, it seems likely that North Carolina will make the NCAA Tournament, given they take care of business against Syracuse. A strong showing in the ACC Tournament will do wonders for the Tar Heels. For the Wolfpack, this has been one of their worst seasons in recent history. How will the team end the season and can they play spoiler in the ACC Tournament?