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UNC Takes Duke Down, 93-84

Just wasn’t Duke’s night, but there was some promise in this game too.

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NCAA Basketball: Duke at North Carolina
Feb 3, 2024; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; Duke Blue Devils forward Mark Mitchell (25) with the ball as North Carolina Tar Heels forward Harrison Ingram (55) defends in the first half at Dean E. Smith Center.
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Duke knew it needed to shut down Carolina’s perimeter and it did a reasonably good job of that, holding RJ Davis to 5-14 for 17 points. Elliot Cadeau was 1-9 for seven total and Cormac Ryan shot just 3-7.

But it didn’t matter because Armando Bacot and Harrison Ingram made up the difference with 46 points and 22 rebounds between them. They also combined to shoot 18-25.

The game opened about as expected. Kyle Filipowski hit a spinning layup for Duke before UNC shot out to a 13-8 lead and then went up 20-16.

That's pretty typical for this rivalry - one team always shoots ahead and then, typically, the other catches up.

Jeremy Roach had 10 points in the first 12 12 minutes but no one else scored more than a single basket.

Jared McCain finished the first half with nine points and seven rebounds while Filipowski had six points and four boards.

Duke had some bad first-half turnovers - a total of six - and UNC scored 10 points off of those. That would be a game-long pattern.

That and a 9-0 advantage from the foul line - UNC hit 5-9 there - gave the Tar Heels a considerable advantage and helped UNC to a 45-35 halftime lead.

Duke had just five assists on 16 baskets to 10-18 for UNC.

Duke did suppress RJ Davis, limiting him to 2-6 in the first half, but Armando Bacot and Harrison Ingram were dominant in the opening stanza. Bacot had 12 points and eight boards while Ingram finished with 11 and six. Elliot Cadeau shot just 1-4 but had all of UNC’s free throws.

For Duke, Mark Mitchell had one basket in the half, but quite honestly that was the only time we really noticed him on the court.

Roach and Proctor finished the first half with two fouls.

As the second half opened, UNC continued to pressure Duke on both ends. UNC did a great job limiting Duke’s three point attack in the second half and kept forcing turnovers and Duke never quite got over the hump.

The Blue Devils had some hope with :43 left and down 88-79 when RJ Davis fouled Filipowski. The officials ruled that Duke would get two shots and the ball.

But Filipowski missed the first then hit the second, only for Duke to turn it over on the inbounds, and that was basically the last-gasp for the Devils.

You have to give UNC a lot of credit. They generally played harder than Duke did and certainly smarter. To illustrate the difference, at one point, Ingram fell to the ground, got the rebound and tossed it back towards half-court to a teammate.

It was a very heady play and that sort of thing really cost Duke.

For the game, McCain finished with 23, Filipowski with 22 and Roach with 20. Proctor picked a bad time to have a bad game - he finished with just two, although UNC had a lot do to with that too.

On the bright side, we got a tremendous game from McCain. Aside from his 23 points, he also had 11 rebounds and showed a heady sense for the game that is a lot of fun to watch.

Nothing to do now but to congratulate Carolina for a great game and get back at it.

Next play.

Poll

Player Of The Game vs. UNC

This poll is closed

  • 1%
    Mark Mitchell
    (6 votes)
  • 2%
    Kyle Filipowski
    (15 votes)
  • 3%
    Tyrese Proctor
    (17 votes)
  • 88%
    Jared McCain
    (471 votes)
  • 0%
    Caleb Foster
    (3 votes)
  • 3%
    Ryan Young
    (21 votes)
  • 0%
    Caleb Foster
    (1 vote)
534 votes total Vote Now