Yesterday afternoon, the Tar Heels were able to dispose of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 81-64, which improved their record in ACC play to 3-2. The Irish have struggled in conference play so far, mostly because of their shotty defense. UNC had the task of taking advantage of this, and no Tar Heel was able to do it better than our Player of the Game, Armando Bacot.
Bacot finished yesterday’s game with 21 points, 13 rebounds, four assists, and two blocks. He was tasked with handling Nate Laszewski, and while the Notre Dame senior did manage to score 17 points, he wasn’t able to deal with Bacot in the paint. The Heels did a very good job of feeding Bacot all afternoon, which is evident in his team-high 17 field goal attempts. The Irish tried to double-team him as often as they could, but not only was Bacot too strong for them, he was also getting fed in transition for some easy finishes at the rim.
The one player that put up the toughest fight against Bacot was freshman forward Dom Campbell, who played aggressively throughout the game. While that sounds like a positive, he was getting a little too physical with Bacot, and eventually fouled out of the game. At the end of the day, Bacot was too much for the smaller Fighting Irish, and he was the biggest reason (no pun intended) that the Heels were able to secure a dominant victory.
One other player worth noting in this game is Puff Johnson, who gave some really good minutes off of the bench. Dealing with health issues all season, Johnson was able to finish the game with 11 points, six rebounds, and an assist in 22 minutes of action. Hubert Davis has been desperately seeking production from his bench, and Johnson was able to step up to the plate in a big way. Hopefully we will see more from him this Tuesday when UNC has to travel to Charlottesville to take on Virginia.