A wise man once said that everything looks better when the ball goes in the basket, and boy was he right. The UNC team that showed up this afternoon looked nothing like the team on a three-game losing streak that couldn’t seem to hit water falling out of a boat. The team that showed up today played real Carolina basketball, and it resulted in a 91-71 win against Clemson.
The Tar Heels shook off their prior poor shooting performances with a 48% effort from the floor. They made 15 of their 33 shots from three and led from about the halfway point of the first half onwards. For the team that seemed so disinterested in an embarrassing first half in Winston-Salem earlier this week, it was a night and day difference.
Caleb Love led the way for Carolina with 23 points and five assists to just one turnover. He made six of his nine shots from long distance. Armando Bacot turned in another double-double effort with 19 points and 11 rebounds. RJ Davis joined them in double figures with 17 points with four three-pointers. The Tar Heels turned it over just seven times all game.
It really was a team effort. Six different Tar Heels made a three-pointer and nine different Tar Heels scored. The bench, which has really been hot and cold all season, chipped in 25 points.
A game like this was absolutely what this team needed. After a brutal three-game losing streak that had their talent, effort, and potential to even make the NCAA Tournament questioned, they showed up today. Maybe they answered the call Bacot put out there after the loss to Wake Forest. Maybe this game would have happened either way. We’ll never know, but this is exactly the way they have to play the rest of the way through the regular season to ensure that they don’t end up on the outside looking in come March.
The Heels will try to build off this momentum in a tough test against Miami in Chapel Hill on Monday.