Wrap-up: Harrison Barnes is an F-18, bro


UNC 72, Florida State 70

Box Score

Pretty much everything that was predicted about the Florida State game came true. It was a close game, Derwin Kitchen led the ‘Noles and Carolin
a pulled out the win.

Oh, and Harrison Barnes “Sheened” all over Tallahassee.

In what has become a regular occurrence for the Heels in the Sunshine State, they won on a last second shot. FSU, which hadn’t lost an ACC game at home, came to play, hanging with Carolina for the entire game. But after Kitchen’s free throws put the ‘Noles up one with 18 seconds to go, it came down to Harrison Barnes to pull off the final shot in his typically heroic fashion.

After a timeout, Marshall drove the entire length of the floor and tossed up a prayer of a lay-up that was easily swatted out of bounds under the Heels’ offensive end — 11 seconds to go. The inbound came back to Marshall, who then passed it to Barnes who nonchalantly hung out at the top of the key.

Holy shit, he’s going to shoot it.

Yes, Barnes did shoot it — from behind the arc when only down one — and swished it. It wasn’t quite the play Roy had drawn up, but it went in. Barnes would later tell the media that he was supposed to drive, but saw that it was more open to take the trey. Who’s a  freshman?

Takeaways

  • This was probably the Heels best game of the year. Beating Kentucky was nice, sure, but it was at home and Kentucky has shown that they can’t play on the road in the SEC, let alone in Chapel Hill. This was a true road game that really mattered to both teams late in the year. Duke didn’t pull it off down in Tallahassee, but Carolina found a way. Impressive.
  • You might think we’re getting too excited about a game that was very close to a loss, well, get used to it. Every game from here until the end of the season is going to be a grudge match, and this team keeps finding a way to win. Not every team that will be dancing this month has that skill or tenacity, and this team has both.
  • Kendall Marshall had a couple of freshman moments at the end of the game, turning the ball over on a downcourt pass with maybe two minutes left and also tossing it up for grabs in the corner with less than a minute left rather than calling a timeout. It’s true, that Dean Smith’s Carolina teams were coached not to call timeouts on their own, but in his after-game press conference, Roy Williams indicated he would have liked Marshall to do that. I guess you have to change your ways. At this point we know Kendall learns a ton every game, let’s hope he learned a little bit about handling the end of a tight one last night.
  • Marshall only had half the number of assists he did in his first meeting with FSU, but there isn’t much sweeter than that one-handed bounce pass to Henson through traffic. Beautiful.
  • If you didn’t click on it above already, read Adam Lucas’ account of the locker room after the game. This team gets along about as well as the ’09 team, and that’s saying something.

Superlatives

Player of the Game: The Black Falcon (18 pts, 4 rebs) After seemingly dissappearing in the second half, Barnes reasserted himself as the go-to player on the Tar Heels. He. Is. Based.

Stat Stuffer (a.k.a. the John Henson Award): #seewhatididthere (19 pts, 12 rebs, 2 asts, 3 blks)

Stat of the Game: OK, it’s two games worth, but in both his meetings with Florida State this year combined, Kendall Marshall has 24 assists to six turnovers. Suck on that, Nolan.

Almost-fight of the Game: Deividas Dulkys of Florida State said a few words to Henson after a rough play under the baskest. Henson seemed to have more than a few for him in return, and Dulkys shut up immediately. Only about a half foot height difference in those two, and I’d say Henson has him on the reach.