Heels control game but manage to lose

North Carolina, which led most of the game, went cold at the end while Georgia Tech was busy hitting six of its last seven shots to top the Tar Heels 72-67 in Atlanta. (12/30) The Tar Heels led by 11 during the first half, six at the half and eight with less than seven minutes to play. But the Yellow Jackets hit four straight shots, including three triples, to tie the score with just over four minutes to go. With 3:25 to go, Jose Alvarado, who scored 20 for Georgia Tech, hit the Jackets’ fifth shot in a row to […]

North Carolina, which led most of the game, went cold at the end while Georgia Tech was busy hitting six of its last seven shots to top the Tar Heels 72-67 in Atlanta. (12/30)

The Tar Heels led by 11 during the first half, six at the half and eight with less than seven minutes to play. But the Yellow Jackets hit four straight shots, including three triples, to tie the score with just over four minutes to go.

With 3:25 to go, Jose Alvarado, who scored 20 for Georgia Tech, hit the Jackets’ fifth shot in a row to give them a 66-65 lead that they would never relinquish.

After going up by eight points, highlighted by back-to-back threes by freshman Kerwin Walton, the Tar Heels went cold save for another three by Walton with 5:24 to go. Carolina went more than four minutes without a field goal and only scored four points over the last five minutes.

“We’re giving up too many open shots,” UNC coach Roy Williams said. “The defensive end of the floor has been a problem for us… You stop runs by scoring yourself or getting defensive stops.” Coach Williams added that the Heels did neither.

Carolina did shoot better from deep in this game, canning eight threes. R.J. Davis’ three with 7:40 left in the first half gave the Heels their largest lead at 22-11. Caleb Love, who had only hit four threes all year, hit a pair of threes including one midway through the second half which quelled a GT run.

The Heels eventually trailed though and Platek hit a three to tie it at 52-all and then Walton hit those three threes in less than three minutes to give Carolina a cushion it couldn’t hold.

Despite Carolina holding a 12-point rebound edge, part of the Tar Heels’ undoing were 18 turnovers that led to 19 Yellow Jackets’ points.

The Tar Heels, led by Armando Bacot’s 14 points, fall to 5-4 and 0-2 in the conference. It’s only the sixth time Carolina has ever started the conference year with two losses and the first time since 2014.

Georgia Tech improves to 5-3.

North Carolina’s game against Syracuse Saturday has been postponed due to COVID-19 so the Heels next game is next week at Miami.

For a box score and more about the game, please click here.