Most importantly, the Tar Heels got a 66-65 win over Notre Dame. It was a back and forth battle, with neither team ever grasping full control of the game. The game featured yet another new starting lineup; Caleb Love, Kerwin Walton, Leaky Black, Armando Bacot, and Day’Ron Sharpe. That specific lineup showed increased energy, however, there were still turnovers, inconsistent offense-including a four minute first half scoring drought, and the Fighting Irish still got open shots. The first half was back and forth, including nine lead changes. With just under five minutes left, the Fighting Irish built a 26-19 lead. The Tar Heels quickly responded with a 10-0 run. The Irish led 30-29 at half.
At the midpoint of the second half the Fighting Irish held a 49-46 lead. With 7:30 left in the game, Nate Laszewski hit his seventh three and the Fighting Irish took a 57-50 lead. Carolina answered with a 9-0 run and the game was tied at 59 at the under four media timeout, where it came down to the wire. A combination of baskets from Sharpe, Walton, and Black, coupled with a game winning stop, led to the Tar Heels win.
*The Tar Heels got a much needed win.
*Day’Ron Sharpe is a force to be reckoned with
*Rebounding-the Tar Heels won the overall rebounding battle, 48-27
*Only eight turnovers
The not so positives:
*This team should have an abundance of offensive options. Someone has to step up and be consistent. The Heels cannot continue to have four plus minute scoring droughts.
*A lack of forcing turnovers and getting stops is robbing the Tar Heels of their bread and butter-transition scoring.
*21 offensive rebounds led to only 18 second chance points.
*Yes, Nate Laszewski is still open
*North Carolina’s big lineup continues to struggle against teams that have a stretch four or five.
Leading scorers-Sharpe-25, Walton-12, Black-8
Leading rebounders-Bacot-10, Sharpe-9, Brooks-8
Next up for the Tar Heels-Tuesday, January 5th at Miami.