For a change of pace, Florida State will actually play in an ACC Tournament game on Friday night … we think.
The Seminoles were crowned the ACC Champions last year without playing a game in the tourney after the even was called off prior to the quarterfinal round … and after North Carolina had already logged two games.
This year, the Tar Heels have again already gotten in two games, while FSU has been riding the bye train.
The Noles earned a double bye into Thursday’s quarterfinals, just like last year, on the strength of its second-place finish in the regular season. The Seminoles then picked up another bye when quarterfinal opponent Duke had a positive COVID test on the team and had to drop out.
So the Noles and Heels will tip off for a spot in the championship game on Friday night at 8:30. The tip time has been moved up since the other scheduled semifinal was cancelled due to another COVID issue—this one on Virginia’s team. That gave Georgia Tech a pass to the final to face the winner of Carolina-FSU.
The Tar Heels and Seminoles have met twice already this year, splitting the two games. The Tar Heels lost in Tallahassee, 82-75 in January, as the Noles hit 8-of-16 from three.
In the late February rematch in Chapel Hill, FSU appeared well on its way to a blowout, building a 16-point lead against the turnover-prone Heels. Carolina rallied, however, and ended up winning a 78-70 comeback win.
The Seminoles haven’t played since Saturday and will be well-rested, while Carolina will be playing for the third time in three days. On Thursday, the Heels had a dogfight against Virginia Tech, gutting out a comeback victory.
Black, Love, Walton, Bacot, Brooks are your starters.
Your officials: Roger Ayers, Bert Smith, Clarence Armstrong
Tired legs? Rust? Each team seems to have something. They've combined to shoot 2-of-15. At the under 16, UNC leads 4-2.
FSU seems to have an extra guy or two in on defense. Hands on every pass, defender in every face.
FSU on a 7-0 run. Everything, including free throws, is short for UNC right now. Could be seeing the effects of fatigue. At the under 12, it's 12-6 FSU.
Not sure what he saw, but Roy Williams stomped and yelled just before FSU drove to the rim, uncontested, kicked and then drove to the rim uncontested again for a layup. Looks like Leaky is getting the blame, because he's immediately pulled.
FSU has doubled up the Heels, 22-11.
UNC shooting 4-of-16 with no assists and seven turnovers. Thinks are teetering, could tip into ugly soon, unless they can turn things around like in the matchup in Chapel Hill
FSU up 16-6 on points in the paint, 7-1 on fast break points. At the under 8, the Noles lead 24-13.
Florida State is in UNC's heads right now. Leaky Black just went for a layup and at the last second decided to change to a reverse and threw the ball over the backboard.
Osborne hits a three at the buzzer to put FSU up 35-24 at the half. UNC looked like a team that had played each of the last three days in the first half.
Brooks, Bacot, Sharpe and Kessler have combined for six shots, or as many as Anthony Harris
FSU opens the second half with an offensive foul, allowing a three-point play to UNC, turnover. UNC back in single digits
Here comes Carolina. Steal and three cuts the FSU lead to four. Time out Seminoles
FSU dunk, UNC offensive foul (on Love) and we're at the under 16, 42-36.
Walton for three, his second of the entire tournament. Lead is down to three.
Walton hits two more threes and suddenly, UNC leads.
FSU responds to the 13-2 UNC run with a 6-0 run to regain the lead. At the under 8, it's 54-53.
Three straight empty possessions for Carolina, last two at the rim. Fatigue may be catching up.
Love for three and we're tied. Buckle up. Here we go...
FSU fouls the three-point shooter taking us to the under four. Noles up 62-61 with UNC going to the line.
RJ Davis knocks down all 3 to put UNC on top by 2. UNC now has an eight-attempt edge at the line
Foul on Love, his fourth.
FSU misses front of a 1-and-1. UNC has a shot clock violation. FSU ball 2:29 left, UNC up 2
Polite for three puts FSU back on top. under two minutes.
UNC runs the shot clock down and can't get a good shot. FSU ball up one. One minute left.
Walker called for a charge. UNC ball 56.7 left.
RJ Davis blocked on a layup drive. Brooks fouls on the rebound, his fourth.34.9 left. FSU to the line.
Noles hit both. Walton misses a tough shot, Sharpe fouled as he gets the offensive rebound. He goes to the line with UNC down three. 20.2 left.
Sharpe misses the first. Roy calls time out. 67-64 FSU.
Sharpe misses the second. UNC is 14 of 25 from the line. Love fouls out. FSU shooting for a two-possession lead. 14.8 left.
Koprivica hits 1-of-2. FSU up 68-64
Walton airball three, Black puts in the rebound. Two-point game but there's 2.7 seconds left.
UNC fouls with one second left. FSU misses the first, so Carolina will get a shot
FSU hits the second. 69-66, 1.0 seconds left. Carolina inbounding under the FSU basket.
Harris can't handle the inbound pass and that's the game. FSU moves on.