Tar Heels get it right this time, bring home the title

by Abel Hampton April 7, 2017, 2:00
Tar Heels get it right this time, bring home the title

Seldom in life do we get what we actually desperately want.

After UNC's 71-65 win over Gonzaga in Monday night's national championship game, the Tar Heels made their triumphant journey from Phoenix back to Chapel Hill. They wanted this: A title of their own.

North Carolina head coach Roy Williams cuts the net after the finals of the Final Four NCAA college basketball tournament against Gonzaga, Monday, April 3, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. Of the 18 men's basketball championships earned this still-young century, the Blue Devils or the Tar Heels have won one-third.

Much was made of the size matchup between the twin gargantuan frontcourts of the Tar Heels and Bulldogs, and neither team shied away from banging away on the interior despite the game grinding to an ugly, defensive stalemate for long stretches of the clock.

"I don't think any of us think we played our absolute best game and that hurts", Gonzaga point guard Nigel Williams-Goss said.

Had Eades called Meeks out of bounds, Gonzaga would've gotten the ball down by one with 53 seconds left. Both teams were in the bonus - FWEEE! - with 14 minutes left, bringing the game's flow and pace - FWEEE! - to a grinding - FWEEE!

The Tar Heels have, in the past, turned down invitations to the White House, back when George W. Bush was President. Gonzaga, down by three points in the closing seconds of the national championship game, was going to take the easy two and test North Carolina's nerves at the foul line in the final 15 seconds.

But, much like their national semifinal win over OR, weathering the opponent's storm proved to be more important than just about anything else.

When asked about the officiating crew calling a whopping 44 fouls in the game (including this extremely questionable one on Gonzaga's Zach Collins), Few had nothing but positive things to say. "The problem was there was a foul on the play".

All in all, this year's NCAA Championship game topped off a historical run by each team.

Hicks finished with 13 points and nine rebounds. I would like to see the kids decide who wins the game!

Forward Isaiah Hicks made a hanging jumper in the lane with 26 seconds left for a 68-65 North Carolina lead before Williams-Goss, who had scored eight consecutive points for Gonzaga, was blocked on the other end. There couldn't be a better showing of this struggle than the Bulldogs 7-foot-1 Przemek Karnowski. If this doesn't prompt the NCAA to consider adding a sixth foul, I don't know what will. The Tar Heels were in the title game past year and lost on a buzzer-beater to Villanova.

"Sometimes you feel like you don't know how to play basketball when that stuff happens". "And I tried to be more positive and I told them, a year ago we were ahead at halftime and the other team came out more focused than we did". Officials unfairly get criticized often, but unfortunately this time they deserved it and then some.

"Whether they won or lost, they're our local heroes", said one man. If it hadn't, clearly I would have had the 2005 team play the 1982 team in the final game and thumped my chest about how right I was to favor my favorite teams. But right now, it's all types of emotions going on right now.


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