Final: North Carolina 94, No. 4 Duke 81
That was not the way Duke planned for coach Mike Krzyzewski's send-off to go.
With Duke hosting rival North Carolina in the schools' regular-season finale and Coach K's final home game, the Tar Heels upset the fourth-ranked Blue Devils, 94-81, in Durham, with dozens of former Duke men's basketball players and other luminaries present for the occasion. Duke won the first meeting against North Carolina by 20 points in February but the Tar Heels also won on the round in a massive victory for them in the rivalry and their NCAA tournament resume.
North Carolina coach Hubert Davis, in his first season replacing a legend in Roy Williams, rode his starters for the entire second half and they delivered with 55 points, finishing with 94 for the game. ACC Player of the Year candidate Armando Bacot finished with 23 points and seven rebounds, as Davis' decisions paid off to bench Bacot after his first foul early in the first half and his second late in the half, in order to ensure Bacot could stay on the floor and be aggressive after halftime.
Bacot's frontcourt teammate Brady Manek finished with a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds, while knocking down five of the team's nine 3-pointers. Guards Caleb Love (22 points) and R.J. Davis (21) were both excellent and elusive, finishing with a combined eight assists to one turnover.
Duke freshman Paolo Banchero scored a team-high 23 points, including 15 in the first half, and Jeremy Roach added 15 off the bench. The Blue Devils have still clinched the No. 1 seed in the ACC tournament, while the Tar Heels are on track to be a surefire NCAA tournament team with a 23-8 record (15-5 ACC) heading into the conference tournament on the heels of their biggest win of the season.
Brady Manek's fourth 3-pointer puts Tar Heels up eight
Time is running out for No. 4 Duke as North Carolina's fifth-year forward Brady Manek just hit his fourth 3-pointer of the game — the latest coming from the left wing thanks to a cross-court pass from R.J. Davis — to put the Tar Heels ahead 82-74.
While Duke's Jeremy Roach sank a pair of free throws to cut the deficit to six, Armando Bacot then came up with a huge block on an AJ Griffin drive. The Tar Heels called a timeout with 1:47 remaining, leading 82-76.
R.J. Davis' scoop shot puts North Carolina up six
North Carolina takes four-point lead after 9-0 run
With Coach K's home finale entering the home stretch, rival North Carolina has taken a 65-61 lead thanks to a 9-0 run that started with a 3-pointer from Caleb Love and ended with Brady Manek getting an offensive board and bucket after Duke center Mark Williams was called with goaltending.
R.J. Davis and Armando Davis each scored a basket during the run, as North Carolina is leaning heavily on its starters during a critical stretch against Duke.
Back-to-back blocks leads to Banchero acrobatic layup
A sequence that started with North Carolina's Armando Bacot getting switched onto Duke's Paolo Banchero and the former eventually blocking the latter's shot at the rim ultimately led to Banchero making an acrobatic layup a few moments later.
North Carolina's transition offense led to a Brady Manek layup attempt, which was swatted by Duke's Theo John and Wendell Moore Jr. then found Banchero back on the other end for a layup, with his legs flailing, to put Duke up 56-49.
Paolo Banchero rips and runs for coast-to-coast bucket
Armando Bacot ties the game at 41
Halftime: No. 4 Duke 41, North Carolina 39
Thanks to a deep, step-back 3-pointer by North Carolina guard R.J. Davis, the Tar Heels were able to cut into the No. 4 Duke Blue Devils' lead, as the home team leads 41-39 at halftime of Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski's final home game in Durham.
North Carolina led 9-2 early, as Duke didn't take its first lead until the score was 16-15, and the Blue Devils later pulled away after a 14-0 run in which freshman forward Paolo Banchero scored seven of the points. He has 15 at halftime, the latest two coming from a nifty spin move and slam while being guarded by North Carolina's Brady Manek, who moments later hit a 3-pointer as North Carolina scored the final five points of the half.
Despite North Carolina dealing with foul trouble, as reserve Puff Johnson has three fouls, and the team's leading scorer and rebounder, Armando Bacot, has two, the Tar Heels are in a one-possession game against a rival that's celebrating one of the greatest coaches in the sport's history.
Banchero spins and slams
Guarded by North Carolina's Brady Manek, Paolo Banchero had the ball on the right wing, dribbled to his right, where Manek slide to try to stop a drive to the baseline, and Banchero spun back to his left, before rising for an emphatic slam. The star freshman is already up to 15 points on 7-for-12 shooting.
Duke led 39-33 after the dunk.
Duke storms out front on a 14-0 run
Theo John receives Flagrant 1
Jeremy Roach, Paolo Banchero cut into UNC's lead
North Carolina leads 11-4 at the under-16 media timeout
North Carolina guard R.J. Davis forced Duke's Jeremy Roach into a turnover as Roach lost his dribble and the ball went into the backcourt, prompting and over-and-back call, to the dismay of the Duke bench, that sparked the under-16 timeout. North Carolina leads 11-4 in Cameron Indoor Stadium after losing 87-67 in Chapel Hill on Feb. 5.
Four of North Carolina's five starters have scored, while Duke has made just two of its first seven shots.
North Carolina jumps out to a 7-2 lead
Unranked North Carolina is doing its best in the early going to try to spoil Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski's curtain call as the Tar Heels have an early 7-2 lead, thanks to a forceful dunk and a contested layup from Armando Bacot, followed by a 3-pointer from the left wing from Brady Manek.
Bacot, North Carolina's leading scorer and rebounder, suffered foul trouble early in the first meeting, and North Carolina coach Hubert Davis sent Bacot to the bench Saturday when Bacot picked up his first foul in the opening three minutes.
Duke vs. North Carolina is now underway
For the final time in his 42-season tenure at Duke, Mike Krzyzewski takes the sideline inside Cameron Indoor Stadium, as No. 4 Duke (26-4, 16-3 ACC) hosts rival North Carolina (22-8, 14-5) in both schools' regular-season finale. The game, which follows a pregame ceremony in which Krzyzewski was joined on the floor by dozens of his former players, is now underway on ESPN2, after the game between Kansas and Texas went into overtime on ESPN.
Duke has already clinched the No. 1 seed in the ACC tournament, while North Carolina enters the game one win behind Notre Dame in the conference standings.