UNC coach may not let his players meet Trump
Ronald Pratt | April 9, 2017, 3:05
North Carolina head coach Roy Williams yells during the second half in the finals of the Final Four NCAA college basketball tournament against Gonzaga, Monday, April 3, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz.
The University of North Carolina Tar Heels, who fell agonizingly sort of the goal previous year, beat the Gonzaga Bulldogs 71-65 on Monday to claim the coveted United States collegiate basketball crown. After the possession arrow favored North Carolina on a tie-up, Isaiah Hicks made a basket to push the lead to 68-65 with 27 seconds left.
It was what the Tar Heels had to do because the team that made 36 percent of its three-pointers and 70 percent of its free throws this season was 4-27 behind the arc Monday for a breezy 14.8 percent and 15 of 26 from the free-throw line, 57.7 percent.
Berry was named the outstanding player of the Final Four, playing on two bad ankles and bouncing back from a 2-for-14 shooting effort against OR on Saturday.
Jackson scored 16 points, but missed all nine of his three-point attempts. Nonetheless, Carolina prevailed with outstanding defense in the closing seconds as senior forward Kennedy Meeks stuffed redshirt junior Nigel Williams-Goss which allowed junior Justin Jackson a wide open dunk with 11.4 seconds left, icing the game for the Tar Heels. He was 1 for 8 when scoring in the paint.
Gonzaga (37-2) missed nine consecutive shots in the second half and went 8:27 without a basket, but North Carolina (33-7) didn't have the offense to deliver a decisive run as it remained a one-possession game for nearly all of the second half.
North Carolina celebrating its 2017 national championship win in several Jordan Brand styles.
The play occurred with the Tar Heels leading 66-65 with 49.1 seconds remaining in the game. And I think to be so close for us is a temporarily crushing blow right now. "And for us we're just happy we came out on top, and this is an wonderful feeling".
The all-tournament players had bad offensive numbers, but better than everyone else.
And one more, just to be on the safe side since, you know, the national championship and all.
Most freakish sequence: With 8:02 left, Berry got called for a foul for (maybe) making contact with Karnowski and stripping the ball from the big man's hands.
Still, Gonzaga only shot 24 percent in the second half - the real cause of its loss.
Bulldogs coach Mark Few had no idea from his vantage point on the far end of the court that the jump-ball call was questionable.
Anyway, the Bulldogs are still without a national championship and the Tar Heels walk away with their sixth. The Bulldogs' Zach Collins - the hero of a Final Four win over SC - fouled out with 5:03 to go after playing only 14 minutes.
"Coach Rob just said, 'remember that moment and how we felt past year". Both teams started off a bit slow and then picked things up once they seemed to get rid of their nerves.
But to say everything went right for Roy Williams' team at this Final Four would be less than the truth.