UNC Basketball handles first true road test in win over Pittsburgh

Hubert Davis and the UNC basketball program took care of business on the road as they defeated Pittsburgh to improve to 2-0 in conference play.

Dec 20, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels forward Armando Bacot (5) at
Dec 20, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels forward Armando Bacot (5) at / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
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With the way the game started, it didn't look particularly good for the UNC basketball program.

The Tar Heels missed each of their first 10 shot attempts, taking over six minutes and 30 seconds to score their first basket.

Thanks to a strong defensive effort overall, along with an improved shooting performance as the game went on, the Tar Heels defeated Pittsburgh in their first true road game of the 2023-2024 season.

Final. 70. 838. UNC Pitt. 57. 444

Prior to Tuesday night, the Jeff Capel-led Panthers have had the Tar Heels number as of late. Winning five of the last six matchups, including each of the last three, securing a victory, especially at Pittsburgh, is a big one for the Tar Heels as they look to gain momentum in ACC play.

It was a referee fest, especially in the second half, as any type of momentum was tough to come by. After the referee crew essentially let the kids play through the first portion of the game, the game tightened up real quick, as there were foul calls on what seemed like every possession on both sides of the floor.

Seth Trimble played a huge role in this victory, as he scored seven first-half points that went a long way in helping the Tar Heels get on track offensively. Trimble, along with RJ Davis, provided most of the first half scoring, as starters Harrison Ingram and Cormac Ryan had their fair share of struggles shooting the basketball.

In fact, Ingram missed each of his first 10 shots and went just 2-14 from the field, but recorded a career-high 15 rebounds, as he still was able to make an impact even though it was his lowest scoring output so far as a Tar Heel.

For the first time in what feels like a while, Davis wasn't the Tar Heels leading scorer. That title belongs to Armando Bacot, who finished with a 16-point, 10-rebound outing. He became the seventh UNC basketball player ever to record 2,000 career points in the process, as he joins an elite group of Tar Heels on the exclusive list.

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North Carolina knew Pittsburgh would be physical throughout, and the Tar Heels never backed down from the challenge. Yes, the offense could've been more efficient, but given the way this game started, it's impressive that the Tar Heels not only won this game, but did so by double-digits in a tough environment to play in.

The UNC basketball program has another tough test coming up, as they'll travel to Clemson on Saturday afternoon for another ACC battle.

Next. Katz names UNC/Clemson best game of the week. Katz names UNC/Clemson best game of the week. dark

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