CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — With Michael Jordan sitting on press row at the Dean Dome, the UNC-Chapel Hill Tar Heels shot a blistering 56 percent from long range in their 100-80 win over N.C. State Saturday.
“I thought we ran into a red-hot ‘Carolina team on the road and it was tough, they hadn’t shot that well all year,” lamented Wolfpack head coach Kevin Keatts.
Keatts was right. In fact, on Wednesday against Boston College, the Tar Heels set a school record for the lowest field goal percentage in a win, hitting just 29 percent for the game.
“It was tough, we played from behind for the entire game,” Keatts explained. “And I felt like as the game went along because they were shooting so well, we tried to match some of those shots and certainly when you do that the game can get away from you.”
N.C. State freshman guard Terquavion Smith did all he could to keep the Pack in the game. Smith scored a game-high 34 points, just one point short of the school record for a freshman.
“Me, I’m going hard every time I get the chance,” said Smith. “Even if I’m not hitting, I’m still going hard, I give my all to N.C. State every time I step on the floor.”
Smith and Jericole Hellems combined for 59 of the Pack’s 80 points. N.C. State’s leading scorer, Dereon Seabron, was held to a season-low two points and played just 23 minutes, sitting out almost the entire second half.
“I just didn’t think he was playing well,” said Keatts of Seabron’s effort. “He’s no different from any other player on our team. If you’re not playing well, not playing good basketball, then somebody else obviously gets the opportunity. I just didn’t think he had it tonight for whatever reason I didn’t think he was playing well.”
North Carolina on the other hand played lights out on a day the Heels raised a banner for former coach Roy Williams to the rafters while honoring the 1982 National Championship team. It was a squad that featured Michael Jordan.
N.C. State (10-12, 3-8 ACC) will look to return the favor when the Tar Heels come to Raleigh in late February.
But first, State has three straight winnable home games starting Wednesday when Syracuse comes to town for a 9 pm. tip-off.