I was out most of the day, and when I finally got home to flip on the television, it was 55-49 Carolina with 14 minutes to play. I knew then Carolina had the game in hand.
The Heels didn't act like it, playing sloppily for large stretches of remaining minutes, but the important part of the game had already passed. UNC was playing at their tempo, and running BC into the ground.
I don't know why Vitale blew off any questions of the Eagles depth, anymore than I know why he was so focused on Doug Flutie's seat selection or any of his other obnoxious tangents, but he was wrong in this case. BC couldn't hit a single three in the second half, and decent free throw shooter Dudley missed three in a row at a critical juncture. That's exhaustion. The Eagles played smothering defense, a marked departure from the Duke game, but that amount of effort spread over that few players makes it hard to have the energy to hit shots at the end.
UNC's play, was as I mentioned, sloppy. But last Tuesday's killers, poor three point and free throw shooting weren't evident. There was good defense down the stretch, even if they did give up too many passes into the low post in the last ten minutes. Overall, a good and necessary win with only four conference games remaining.