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Jan 26, 2013; Raleigh, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels guard Marcus Paige (5) attempts to pass around North Carolina State Wolfpack guard Lorenzo Brown (2) during the second half at PNC Arena. North Carolina State won 91-83. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

UNC Basketball: Round One to Lorenzo Brown of NC State Over Marcus Paige

Heading into the NC State game Marcus Paige looked poised to play a strong game in PNC arena, but Lorenzo Brown had different plans.  Brown was dominant from the start doing what he wanted to do whenever he wanted scoring 20 points and dishing out 11 assists.  The Wolfpack put on an offensive clinic in the first half and despite UNC’s run in the second half NC State dominated this game.

Marcus Paige started the game going 0-8 from the floor until hitting a transition lay up to break into the scoring column.  What was more concerning than Paige’s misses was the panic type play he exhibited on the court.  His counterpart Lorenzo Brown was only 6-14 from the floor, but his shooting percentage was over shadowed by his command of Mark Gottfried’s offense and fueling a fast break that saw the Wolfpack outscore UNC 20-0 in transition during the first half.

Roy Williams became so frustrated with Paige’s play he switched to back up Luke Davis who hasn’t played since turning his ankle.  Paige was able to calm himself by watching and entered back in the game with eight minutes to go.  The Tar Heels crawled back to as close as five, but it wasn’t enough to extend the streak of thirteen wins over the Pack.

Marcus Paige is a solid player and is going to develop into an excellent point guard for Roy Williams.  The plan was for Paige to sit behind Kendall Marshall for a year as he grew stronger to prepare for the grind that comes with a full season.  Of course that plan was altered when Marshall left and here we are going through the learning process with a young point guard.  When Paige is playing well you can see the promise that will come with time.  Tar Heel fans just need to exhibit something they rarely have been forced to do since Roy Williams returned to North Carolina. They will need to be patient and Paige will deliver in due time. Round one in this point guard dual may have gone to Brown, but Paige will have a chance in Chapel Hill to redeem himself.

Tags: Lorenzo Brown Marcus Paige North Carolina State Wolfpack North Carolina Tar Heels

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