This was a game where the final score (80-67) does not indicate the competitiveness of the affair – the largest lead was the final margin. The game was close the whole way. Kansas had a seven point lead for about 40 seconds in the first half, before it was erased quickly, and the game was tied at the half. Kansas would build up leads of 5-7 points in the second half; North Carolina would come back.
Eventually, the Tar Heels ran out of responses when Jeff Withey’s blocks turned the game.
North Carolina got it within two at 68-67 with 4 minutes left, but did not score again. Following a dumb Reggie Bullock turnover, Elijah Johnson made a clutch three pointer that UNC never recovered from.
On the next possession, John Henson drove, but had his shot blocked by Withey, and it led to a Taylor layup plus the foul. On the following UNC possession, Withey’s block of Stillman White set up another fast break dunk and a nine point lead. UNC was done.
North Carolina scored 47 points in the first half, but managed only 20 in the second half, and six in the final 10 minutes. Kansas closed the game on a Kansas advances to face Ohio State in the national semifinal in what should be an even matchup.