UNC Tar Heels 104 - Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 74.
This was the game that all UNC fans were hoping to see for the last eight weeks. Having a week off did the Tar Heels some good, as they put together their best performance in the last two months. It was a great way to end February and hopefully it will carry over into March.
There were great contributions from all the players on both sides of the ball as UNC held GT to 44 percent shooting while shooting 53 percent, and outrebounded GT by 12 boards.
Coach Roy Williams was quoted as saying that all UNC did during practice was work on fundamentals the last week and it showed, as the Tar Heels worked well by starting to look inside first and then working outside the entire game.
Tyler Hansbrough worked over Georgia Tech's front line for 28 points and 10 rebounds, coming back from an 11-point outing against Maryland. That was the type of performance UNC fans had become accustomed to last year as he won Player Of The Year honors.
Danny Green contributed 23 points, six rebounds, and a couple of big blocks while Ty Lawson showed he can control a game and involve his teammates without having to score a lot of points. Wayne Ellington, Tyler Zeller, Larry Drew II, Ed Davis, Deon Thompson, and Bobby Frasor all made contributions during the game, as UNC played true team basketball.
I truly believe that the Tar Heels were absolutely relentless today, playing in-your-face defense and looking for open teammates on offense. In recent games, UNC has been out-hustled to the ball and did not play smart defensively.
There was a vast improvement against GT, as UNC players were diving for loose balls, rebounding well, and very few times left their men open on the perimeter to double a player down low who could have been guarded one on one.
One of the best moves I saw today was when UNC was up by 24 and became a little too comfortable, allowing Georgia Tech to score three straight times. Williams called a timeout, reamed his players, and then the Tar Heels took control again.
UNC needs to keep this kind of intensity the rest of the season, their last two ACC games, the ACC Tourney, and into March Madness.
I, for one, have not been impressed with UNC's play the last two months and have made no bones stating my feelings. I try to be realistic in my observations, but even I could find very little wrong with their play today. I believe that UNC should take the above picture and hang it in their locker room to remind them of what they are capable of doing.