UNC Basketball: Tar Heels embarrassed at Notre Dame

UNC basketball drops another game down the stretch, as Tar Heels get embarrassed in blowout loss at Notre Dame.

Another dreadful shooting performance doomed the Tar Heels on Thursday night, as North Carolina shot just 31.6 percent from the floor and 25 percent from three-point range, and lost to Notre Dame by a final score of 83-65.

The Tar Heels are still playing without injured junior forward Janelle Bailey, and it showed. They lost the rebounding battle by nine, and struggled to take advantage of second-chance points, despite pulling down 17 offensive boards. They took good care of the basketball, committing just eight turnovers to Notre Dame’s 14. They assisted on just nine of their 24 made buckets, though, while the Fighting Irish recorded an outstanding 26 assists on 33 field goals.

Taylor Koenen had a team-high 19 points for the Tar Heels, but again struggled mightily on the offensive end of the floor. She only hit seven of her 19 shot attempts, and missed all five of her shots from beyond the arc. It was a similar story for Shayla Bennett, who connected on just 6-of-18 shots for the game. She did, however, have team-highs in rebounds (8) and assists (6), while playing all 40 minutes of the game. Madinah Muhammad was the only other Tar Heel to score in double figures (10).

North Carolina falls to 16-12 on the season, and 7-10 in Atlantic Coast Conference play. It’s their sixth consecutive loss, and third 18-point defeat in their last four games. They’ve effectively played themselves out of any NCAA Tournament opportunities that they had when the losing streak began back on February 6 in a loss to Duke.

Katlyn Gilbert led the Irish with a game-high 24 points and eight rebounds in 32 minutes off the bench. Sam Brunelle scored 23 points and pulled down a game-high nine rebounds, while Destinee Walked added 14 points and seven rebounds.

The Irish shot better than 52 percent for the game, and 47 percent from long-range. They controlled the game from start to finish, outscoring the Tar Heels in the first three quarters, and improving their record to 12-17 overall, and 7-10 in conference play.

Next: Tar Heels top Wolfpack

The Tar Heels play their final game of the regular season against Duke on Sunday March 1. Stick with Keeping It Heel for coverage of the game, and everything UNC basketball.