The UNC basketball team put together their best overall performance so far this season to pick a home victory against Louisville.
What a performance from the UNC basketball program!
In an important ACC contest, the Tar Heels put together a stellar offensive performance to defeat Louisville. After a 19-day hiatus due to COVID-19 protocols, North Carolina’s fast pace and high offensive efficiency was too much for the Cardinals to handle.
The Tar Heels got off to a hot start offensively, a trend that continued throughout the contest. It wasn’t until about eight minutes in until the game started to get out of reach.
Senior Garrison Brooks knocked down a free throw with 13:14 left to play in the half. After that point, the North Carolina freshman completely took over the rest of the first half.
The Tar Heels freshman scored the final 33 points of the half. North Carolina were up 19 at the half, their most since they led Miami by 24 back on January 25. Their 48 first-half points also set a new season high.
Roy Williams and the Tar Heels were not done after 20 minutes of play. The offensive explosion continued, as the Tar Heels scored 51 second half points en route to a season-best 99 total points.
North Carolina was led by freshman Kerwin Walton and Day’Ron Sharpe.
Walton was once again phenomenal offensively, especially from deep. The Hopkins, Minn native set career-highs in points (19) and three pointers made in a single game (5).
Sharpe posted his fifth career double-double in the victory. The Greenville, N.C. native led all scorers with 21 points, and recorded 11 total rebounds, eight of which came on the offensive glass.
Along with Sharpe, the Tar Heels big were all very effective in this one. Armando Bacot scored 14 points and hauled in 9 rebounds, while Brooks added 12 points of his own. Freshman Walker Kessler continued his stellar play, as he added 10 points on 4-6 shooting.
Overall, the Tar Heels shot 60.9% from the floor, including 44.4% from three-point land. Ten different Tar Heels had assists in this game, as Andrew Platek led the way with five assists.
North Carolina did struggle at the free throw line, as they made just seven of their 18 attempts. Luckily for the Tar Heels, it did not come back to haunt them in this one.
This clearly was the Tar Heels best performance of the 2020-2021 regular season. There are a few things to look at in regards to this game:
-Playing consistently helps! Adding the Northeastern game during the middle of the week not only gave this team game experience, which is very valuable for a team that still features a handful of freshman in their rotation.
-Louisville was coming off a long break between games, so it was evident that they began to wear down in the second half. However, North Carolina deserves a ton of credit, as they played with high energy throughout and really put the pressure on the Cardinals throughout the entire 40 minutes of play.
-We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves here, but… is this team starting to turn the corner? If they play like this moving forward, they will be a very tough team to beat down the stretch.
Prior to Saturday’s game, it was announced that North Carolina will play Marquette on Wednesday night in Chapel Hill. This non-conference tilt was added as a substitute for Tuesday’s Boston College game, which was postponed due to COVID-19 protocols within the Eagles program.
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