UNC ties a program record in win over Duke at Dean Dome


UNC tied a program record in their big win over the Duke Blue Devils on Thursday night

The North Carolina Tar Heels really needed to put together a string of wins to stay in the race for a double-bye in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament.

After losing three-straight games, the Tar Heels were able to rebound against Pitt at home last Saturday and then followed it up with an impressive win over Duke on Thursday.

UNC trailed by four at the break with Duke dominating the boards in the first half led by freshman Marvin Bagley. But out of the break, the Tar Heels came out hot and were able to grab the lead.

From there they never looked back.

The Tar Heels put together an impressive performance in the second half, building their lead to 11 and holding it despite a comeback attempt from Duke. When UNC needed a bucket the most, they answered and got key points late in the game.

Overall they played a damn good game and looked like a team that could beat anybody rather than the one that lost to Wofford, NC State and Virginia Tech.

But in doing so, one key thing stood out about the Tar Heels performance.

They protected the basketball.

The Tar Heels committed just two turnovers on the game, both by senior Theo Pinson. TWO. Yes, two turnovers.

It was a refreshing performance especially after seeing the Tar Heels get sloppy with the basketball in ACC play this season. There have been a few times where UNC has turned it over 10-plus times in a game, most of the time leading to losses.

Against Duke, it was a different type of performance. UNC was smart with the basketball, drained 11 three-pointers and locked down on defense.

They even made some history by tying a program record for fewest turnovers in a game with three.

That was the fewest since the Tar Heels 1997 first round win over Fairfield in the NCAA Tournament.

As a result, Duke was able to get just one point off of those two turnovers. One of the turnovers came on a questionable charge call on Pinson.

The Tar Heels also had 15 assists in the game compared to just their two turnovers, which is spectacular.

It’s unlikely that UNC will have this few amount of turnovers in a game again this season but if they can protect the basketball and just limit their turnovers, it will be a sign of good things to come.

UNC will be back in action on Saturday afternoon when they travel to take on NC State.

The Wolfpack won the first meeting between these two teams in overtime and now the Tar Heels will be looking for some revenge.

Next: Tar Heels shaking off championship hangover

Check back with Keeping It Heel for more on Saturday’s game.