Three Things: Carolina 77, Florida State 72

By Turner Walston | 2 Comment(s) | Posted

The Tar Heels got a much-needed win in Tallahassee Saturday. Here's a quick reaction on the 77-72 Carolina victory.

1. P.J. Steps Up

Lately it's been difficult to pinpoint the leader on this team, as sometimes it's seemed like no one player wanted to carry the load. Today, P.J. Hairston was unafraid of rising up and taking the big shot, or taking the ball inside. "You've got to have a guy who will deliver and not be afraid of the moment," ESPN analyst said of Hairston in the first half. Hiss 23 points were a career high, and he was 4-9 from three. With 2:17 to play and the Tar Heels up one, Hairston buried a shot with his foot on the line to give Carolina a three-point cushion.

2. Happy Birthday Jackson

Eric Montross said this was the first time Carolina had 'top-to-bottom' effort from the roster, and the box score reflects that. Perhaps the unlikeliest contribution came from Jackson Simmons, who provided a career-high eight points, four rebounds and an assists in 15 minutes on his 20th birthday. Simmons' follow layup with 3:14 to play gave the Tar Heels the lead for good. That play was exemplary of what won the day for the Tar Heels: Carolina got 34 rebounds to Florida State's 18 on the afternoon, and 14 of those 34 were on the offensive glass.

3. Finishing the job

Carolina had led by two at the half both in Charlottesville and at home vs. Miami, only to fail to seal the deal. Today, Carolina led by two again at the intermission. Florida State came out firing, leading by as many as four points on several occasions. But the Seminoles went cold against an energized Tar Heel defense down the stretch. Okaro White's jumper with 4:52 to play was the final Florida State field goal of the game. In fact, the Seminoles were scoreless from there on out, save for White's two free throws at 4:17 to put the home team up, 72-69. After that, Florida State was 0-4 from the floor with four turnovers. Carolina's eight points overcame the deficit and provided the five-point win.


  1. jeff's avatar
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    Prior to this game I had decided that our opponents had better players than UNC, despite star ratings. I.e., today we had players play like men for a change. I not only saw a different team, I saw different players. Roy needs to play Simmons and ?Johnson? more. I believe the gap between Johnson's offense and Hubert's is far greater than the defensive gap between the two. Johnson needs to be in the game when we need offense. I am seeing more and more from Hubert as of late. Bullock and Hairston are men.
  2. Jordan's avatar
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    thought the Heels outrebounded the 'Noles 41-19??? not 34-18?

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