UNC's Berry (ankle) to start against Oregon

North Carolina will take on OR in the semifinals in a building big enough to dry dock an aircraft carrier.

Kennedy Meeks had 25 points and 14 rebounds to lead North Carolina to a 77-76 win over OR in the Final Four Saturday night at University of Phoenix Stadium.

"I got down on myself missing the two free throws", Meeks said. "What I did is, I tried to tell them, let's focus on using this feeling as fuel, as motivation, to work extremely hard in the off-season". North Carolina's Joel Berry II had a quiet night as he plays through two sprained ankles. They have a group-texting channel named, simply, "Redemption". On the second, Meeks outfoxed two opponents with scant contact and took that thing and North Carolina's season-long mission in his considerable hands.

"A dream was to get here", Jackson said. "I mean, we did lose it previous year, but at the same time we know that we have to take care of business first and that's OR". That sidelined him for the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament and the NCAA opener, but he returned through pain in a tough second-round win against LSU that helped propel UNC to Roy Williams' second national championship.

Now all UNC has to do is make sure things don't end the way they did last season. "I miss them a lot". Oregon's only championship was in 1939.

The offensive glass was expected to be a determining factor in the second of Saturday's national semifinals, and that played out in the game's final 5.8 seconds.

North Carolina, in the Final Four again. Maye hit the victor with 0.3 seconds left against Kentucky in the regional final last weekend.

North Carolina missed 17 of its first 20 shots but finished the half with a 17-6 run. They trailed Arkansas by five points with 3:31 left in the second round, Kentucky by five points with five minutes left in the South Region final and OR by eight points in the first half of the national semifinal.

Dillon Brooks led the Ducks with 16.3 points per game while shooting 41 percent from the 3-point line. If Bell struggles and the Ducks have to rely heavily on just Dillon Brooks, it's going to be tough for OR to win this one. "I thought he controlled everything inside", Williams said.

Karnowski first suffered a back injury just before Arizona upset the Zags 68-63 on December 5, 2015, in Spokane, and wound up sitting out the season. "I thought he was just sensational".

Berry is averaging 14.6 points, 3.6 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game this season.

Bell had 11 points, 13 rebounds and eight blocks in a 74-60 takedown of overall No. 1 seed Kansas in an Elite Eight game in Kansas City, Mo.

All part of a career night for the North Carolina senior, who was on the bench a year ago when Villanova devastatingly ended the Tar Heels' chance at a title with a 3-pointer at the buzzer.

North Carolina appeared to lose its shooting touch somewhere between home and Arizona. "But I think we'll be all right once the ball goes up", Pinson said. "'They weren't falling. Some of those games they don't fall. Once I do that, it will be good". Tar Heels fans needn't be reminded that North Carolina lost a heartbreaker to Villanova last season on a buzzer beating shot in the final. "Us four big men had to do a good job on the inside".

A 12-year-old North Carolina girl who before this year had never filled out a March Madness bracket correctly picked the teams competing in the Final Four. "However, we also have an advantage because we want to taste playing in a national championship game". Jordan Bell has come up limping.

  • Julie Sanders