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UNC vs Duke postgame notes

Posted Thursday, February 20, 2014

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Chapel Hill, NC - UNC's Marcus Paige scored all 13 of his points in the second half, including two big baskets in the final 2½ minutes, to help the Tar Heels beat the Blue Devils 74-66 on Thursday night for their eighth straight win.

  • Carolina is now 19-7 overall, 9-4 in the ACC and 13-3 at the Smith Center this year.
  • The Tar Heels have won eight in a row, their longest streak since winning nine in a row in 2011-12.
  • The Tar Heels are now 133-104 against Duke, including 61-34 in Chapel Hill, 16-13 in the Smith Center and 10-12 under head coach Roy Williams.
  • Carolina is the first team to beat the top four teams in the preseason AP poll since the AP began releasing a pre-season poll in 1961-62. The Tar Heels have beaten pre-season #1 Kentucky, #2 Michigan State, #3 Louisville and #4 Duke.
  • Carolina is now 5-1 this year against teams ranked in the AP Top 25.
  • This is the first time unranked UNC has beaten a ranked Duke team since March 9, 2003. Duke was #10 that game.
  • This is the first time that unranked Carolina beat a top five ranked Duke team since March 4, 1990. That was an 87-75 UNC win in Durham over #5 Duke.
  • Duke led 51-40 with 15:07 to play, but Carolina out-scored the Blue Devils 34-15 to finish the game. That includes an 18-6 run over the final 4:58.
  • Senior guard Leslie McDonald led all scorers with a season-high 21 points on 9 of 12 shooting from the floor. He was also 1 for 4 from three-point range and 2 for 4 from the free throw line.
  • It was McDonald's fourth career 20-point game and his second this season (he had 20 against NC State on February 1st.) It was his first game in double figures in the last five games.
  • McDonald had scored a total of 10 points in the last two games and just 19 points in the previous three games. He was 5 for 24 from the floor in the last three contests before tonight's game.
  • McDonald scored the go-ahead basket with 3:54 to play that gave Carolina a 62-60 lead. Duke never tied the game or took the lead again.
  • McDonald's nine field goals are a career-high. His previous high was seven against Mississippi State (11/19/12), UAB (12/1/12) and NC State (2/1/14).
  • James Michael McAdoo had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. It was his sixth double-double of the year and 15thof his career. His basket with 4:24 to play tied the game at 60-all.
  • Marcus Paige, who was named second-team Academic All-America earlier today, scored all 13 of his points in the second half. He hit back-to-back baskets for the Tar Heels with 2:11 (jumper) and 1:30 (drive) to play that gave UNC a 66-62 lead.
  • Tonight was the 11th time this season and second time in as many games that Paige has scored four points or fewer in the first half and double figures in the second. Tonight against Duke, he was scoreless in the first half and had 13 in the second. Monday at Florida State he had four points in the opening half and 16 in the second.
  • Points off turnovers was a tale of two halves. In the first half, Duke scored 18 of its 37 points off nine UNC turnovers, while the Tar Heels managed just three points off five Duke miscues. However, in the second half UNC scored seven points off seven turnovers, while the Blue Devils failed to score a single point off four UNC errors. The game finished with Duke holding an 18-10 advantage in that category.
  • Carolina shot 50 percent from the floor in the second half (15-30) and 47.3 percent for the game. Since losing to Syracuse, Carolina has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in the second half in seven of the last 10 games (.536 vs. Boston College, .615 vs. Clemson, .667 vs. Georgia Tech, .550 vs. Maryland, .536 vs. Notre Dame, .679 vs. Florida State and .500 vs. Duke).
  • Freshman point guard Nate Britt went 6 for 6 from the free throw line, including 4 for 4 in the final 46 seconds.
  • Desmond Hubert tied his season high with 11 minutes played and had two points, a season-high rebounds (as many as he had in the previous six games combined) and a blocked shot.

Postgame Quotes

Head Coach Roy Williams

Opening Statement

"Well, we certainly played a lot better in the second half, I think. For a few minutes there both teams were fighting so hard it wasn't very pretty. It's really two teams that fought awfully hard and understand where they stand in this rivalry. It's a great, great rivalry and it's fun to be involved in it. Loved our guys' composure down the stretch. Free throws have been a problem for us; there is no question. We stepped up there, Nate [Britt] made four in a row there at the end, Marcus [Paige] made a couple, Brice [Johnson] made a couple. I think that was really big for us. The crazy thing is, I thought Desmond Hubert was really big for us, but he went to the free throw line and it just kills him when he shoots it like that so we took him out at that point, but Leslie [McDonald] showed up to night. Leslie has been struggling to say the least, and he made some big baskets for us. It was a bunch of guys that really fought really hard, and I couldn't be prouder of my team than I am right now."

On Duke seeming tired

"Didn't even have that thought. I just looked at my team and thought that Marcus was tired at one point, and that worried me a bit. I took him out around a TV time out and let him sit there for three of four seconds and I asked him if he was ready to go back in. We did try to look down the court, but we didn't get much out of the fast break. 8 points to their 2. We really did want to push the ball, but didn't do a very good job of that."

On missing 13 straight shots and struggling with shooting in this game

"You know I said before the game, that we hope to guard but we also would like for them to miss some shots and I think it was a little bit of both. I think we guarded them OK, but also I think that they missed some shots. The only one I thought they missed one time, it hit and crawled back over the rim, in for three, but they missed some shots that they normally make. They were really hurting us, putting the ball on the floor and driving it to the baskets. So we went zone in the trap and that helped us some, but it was a bunch of kids playing their rear ends off."

On the atmosphere of today's game

"It ranks up there. The biggest thought I had when I came out, the crowd was into it so much. Last year on senior day, I felt that we really let the crowd down, and I didn't want to do that tonight. Our crowd was sensational the whole game, even when we were down, they were into it. We would like to have them that enthusiastic against everybody. But I did, last year it was electric on senior day and then they came out and hit us right in the mouth with about 16, 14 points in a row. It was the only negative thought I had before the game sitting on the bench, I hope we don't let them down."

Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski

Opening Statement

"Well [North Carolina] just played a great second half, and we just didn't respond to it. The crowd, the team, the intensity-we couldn't match it. We just couldn't match it and that's why they won. They played really well in that second half with great determination. When you have a chance, you can't miss layups and inside stuff and free throws. You have a little bit more of a chance; you've got to put high percentage shots in. We didn't do that and that gives the other team even more incentive when the other team is not putting the ball in the basket. They played a lot better than we did in the second half, I thought they came out great and we responded really well and we played a heck of a first half. We looked tired or we didn't have life. No matter what we did in a timeout, we just didn't have that spark. That spark, the anger, the emotion, the thing you have to have to match what their crowd and their team is doing. You have to try to counter that and I just felt we didn't have the life that you needed to have. Again, they deserve to win. The way they played in the second half was outstanding and I'm disappointed that we couldn't play better in the second half."

On the emotion of the game

"Our team has played so well, and we are in a crazy time but the emotion of this game and the respect you have for your opponent and being in this game should carry you through. I thought we played young and we didn't have the life. We couldn't get that. There was something missing, Carolina wasn't. I'm not saying we would've won, but we would've been a lot more interesting there."

On what was missing

"You need to have it on both ends of the court. We didn't have it, whatever the hell 'it' is. The second half, it wasn't in our huddle. When you have it, I thought Carolina had it, then you're going to lose to a team like that. You hope that both teams have it then you have like the first half, it was a heck of a fight. We still had a chance to win. Their credit, they hit their free throws and really executed down the stretch. They're playing great, they have a really goo basketball team. You're not going to beat them without two halves that are worthy of winning."

On the emotional atmosphere

"I think it's an emotional game. No matter what you talk about until you're in it, you don't know. They're kids, kids, men-it can affect you. The atmosphere was sensational, but we should want that and we do. That's a great atmosphere to play in, but sometimes it can hurt your communication patterns. You can start to think of what you're doing instead of what we're doing. That can have an impact, no question."

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UNC vs Duke postgame notes