Shoutout to Justin Jackson for getting 17 points, five rebounds, four assists, a steal, and doing an excellent defensive job on Malik Monk for most of the game. Shoutout to Kennedy Meeks for getting 17 rebounds and grinding down low for 32 minutes. Shoutout to Theo Pinson for getting into the open court and setting up an open look on that shot.
To get this win, it took pretty much everyone contributing something. However, there was one play, and one player, from this game that will be remembered more than most. Luke Maye’s game-winning shot is going to go down in Carolina lore forever. It was also far from the only big play he made against Kentucky.
Maye scored 17 points with three rebounds and two assists. He knocked down two three pointers, one coming to help slow down a Kentucky run in the second half. There was also the loose ball he helped tie up with 17 seconds left that, at least at the time, put UNC on the verge of sealing the game. When the Tar Heels needed a play against Kentucky, Luke Maye made some pretty big ones.
All of this came after his 16-point, 12-rebound performance Friday night against Butler. Luke Maye was named Most Outstanding Player in the South Regional. Even if you were super high on Maye, that is not something that you would have expected to happen this season.
Maye’s time in Carolina blue hasn’t always been perfect. There have been games where he’s looked overmatched. Down the stretch this season he has looked better and has given Carolina solid minutes. If you ever wondered why Roy persisted with him, you now know why. All hail our new king, Luke Maye.