Tar Heels Take NCAA Title, 71-65, Over Gonzaga
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 04, 2017,
Apr 04, 2017, 21:55
North Carolina's Kennedy Meeks also got his third foul right around the same time. On your television sets, it meant waiting for the moment that truly signals the end of the NCAA Tournament on a yearly basis: One Shining Moment.
North Carolina, with no shortage of basketball tradition, was represented by almost 50 former Tar Heels including Vince Carter, James Michael McAdoo and Phil Ford.
"But it was an ugly game because two teams really wanted it badly and the other team wasn't going to allow them to have easy things", Williams said.
Justin Jackson delivered the go-ahead 3-point play with 1:40 left Monday and North Carolina pulled away for a 71-65 win over Gonzaga that washed away a year's worth of heartache.
An unwatchable game turned into a attractive night for the Tar Heels, who turned a free-throw contest into a championship they've been waiting an entire year to celebrate.
It was redemption for the Tar Heels that came with Kris Jenkins, the player who beat them in last season's national championship game, sitting in their cheering section. They needed every one of the 17 offensive boards they got in the semis against OR, and their 15 in the title game helped them quiet frequent charges from Gonzaga, especially in the second half. "But I thought, you know, getting those blocked shots would help us". I think this group was tough enough tonight.. Gonzaga had three players with four or more fouls, including freshman standout forward Zach Collins, who fouled out of the game a couple of minutes after netting his ninth point of the night to go along with his seven rebounds.
Williams-Goss missed a shot with 12.7 seconds left and SC rebounded and called a timeout trailing 75-72. The Tar Heels defeated the Bulldogs 71-65. The Tar Heels only had four turnovers while forcing 14 and were the more disciplined team when it mattered most. "Like I said, nothing would hold him back". Isaiah Hicks ended up scoring for North Carolina to put them up by three points with 24 seconds remaining.
Gonzaga struggled while its two big men fought foul trouble in the second half and lost its shooting touch, its bid for the program's first national championship dashed.
"Probably on me", said Gonzaga coach Mark Few, whose first knowledge of the call came in the postgame press conference. From my angle, it didnt look like an out of bounds situation or I would have called a review. He added nine rebounds and six assists.
Gonzaga didn't score again, though in a game that left fans from both sides booing a spate of over-officious officiating, the game couldn't be settled without a controversial (non) call in the last minute. The Tar Heels claimed their sixth national title by beating a 37-1 opponent, and they did it on a night when they couldn't shoot, got nearly nothing from their bench, didn't rebound all that well, and made fewer than 60 percent of their free throws.
"We were negotiating our way through massive foul trouble, ones that we haven't had all year", Few said.
"It started in '99 when they went to the Elite Eight and we just kept - the Zags keep breaking that ceiling". A steal on the first possession led to an all-alone layup by Berry, and Jackson's two free throws gave North Carolina the lead 35 seconds into the half.