Heels, Bacot rebound to beat Oregon

After North Carolina’s first loss, the Tar Heels rebounded behind freshman Armando Bacot’s 23 points and 12 rebounds to beat No. 11 Oregon 78-74 in the consolation game of the Battle of the Atlantis. (11/29) Bacot said he felt like he got his “butt whupped” in the loss to Michigan. But against the Ducks he said he felt like he protected the glass better and used the moves that he works on every day. “He was sensational,” UNC coach Roy Williams said of Bacot, who also swatted six blocks. “He has a chance to be a really good player.” Williams […]

After North Carolina’s first loss, the Tar Heels rebounded behind freshman Armando Bacot’s 23 points and 12 rebounds to beat No. 11 Oregon 78-74 in the consolation game of the Battle of the Atlantis. (11/29)

Bacot said he felt like he got his “butt whupped” in the loss to Michigan. But against the Ducks he said he felt like he protected the glass better and used the moves that he works on every day.

“He was sensational,” UNC coach Roy Williams said of Bacot, who also swatted six blocks. “He has a chance to be a really good player.” Williams added that Bacot’s effort prior to the game against Oregon wasn’t even in the same strastosphere as what he did Friday.

The Tar Heels, who missed half of their free throws against Michigan, canned 20 of 21 attempts with Bacot scoring nine from the line.

The Heels came out hot, hitting 50 percent of their field goals in the first half en route to a 46-41 lead at the break.

There were eight lead changes early but after Cole Anthony stole an inbounds pass and rushed downcourt for a dunk to give the Heels their largest lead of the half at 44-35.

It stayed close with the lead hovering around five points for much of the second half. But then Brandon Robinson popped a three from the top of the key and K.J. Smith, forced into action due to Carolina foul woes, bounced a nifty assist to Bacot, who finished with a thunderous dunk for a 70-60 lead with just over five minutes to go.

A 9-0 Oregon run put the outcome in doubt but a bucket and four free throws down the stretch by Anthony and a pair of free throws by Robinson wrapped it up.

“They’re a big-time team,” Coach Williams said of Oregon. “I don’t want to play them again.”

In addition to Bacot’s 23, Anthony scored 19 points and Robinson added 13. Garrison Brooks was limited by an injured eye and foul trouble but he still managed nine points and 10 rebounds.

Leaky Black, who turned an ankle against Michigan, started against Oregon but sat out most of the game, including all of the second half, and failed to score.

Carolina, 6-1, hosts Ohio State Wednesday night.

Box Score