Donald L. Tucker Center, Tallahassee, Fla.
| || color="White">UNC || color="White">FSU |
|FG% ||48.3 ||48.0 |
|3-PT. FG% ||40.0 ||50.0 |
|TOTAL REBOUNDS ||41 ||19 |
| ||OFFENSIVE ||19 ||6 |
| ||DEFENSIVE ||22 ||13 |
|ASSISTS ||16 ||17 |
|TURNOVERS ||14 ||10 |
|STEALS ||5 ||8 |
|FREE THROWS ||11/16 ||13/17 |
|BLOCKS ||2 ||4 |
| ||P.J. Hairston (UNC) 23 |
| ||Okaro White (FSU) 15 |
| color="White">REBOUNDS |
| ||Reggie Bullock, James McAdoo (UNC) 8 |
| ||Okaro White (FSU) 6 |
| color="White">ASSISTS |
| ||Marcus Paige, Reggie Bullock (UNC) 4 |
| ||Montay Brandon, Michael Snaer (FSU) 4 |
| color="White">STEALS |
| ||Marcus Paige, Reggie Bullock (UNC) 2 |
| ||Okaro Wihte (FSU) 3 |
"They did the things they had to do to win. They came closer to executing their gameplan. I think that gave them a chance to win and I thought we fell short in terms of executing what we thought we needed to do in order to be successful."
-- FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton on UNC's execution.
FSU knocked down 11 three-point shots in the game
Each team scored just two fast-break points
The number of points UNC outscored FSU in the paint by. The Tar Heels had 34 points in the paint to FSU's 22
- P.J. Hairston: Scored a career-high 23 points in just 28 minutes. Hairston hit four three-pointers to go along with four rebounds, an assist and a blocked shot.
- Okaro White: Lead FSU in scoring with 15 points. He also had a team-high six rebounds and three steals. All 15 of White's points came in the second half.
- Terry Whisnant: Shot 4 of 7 from three-point range. Had 14 points total. Hit three-straight three-pointers, during a 3:00 stretch early in the second half.
Rebounds the difference for North Carolina
There is no question what stat in the box score illustrates what allowed North Carolina to pick up its first conference win of the season more than the number of total rebounds each team pulled down.
UNC defeated Florida State 77-72 on Saturday, as the Tar Heels outrebounded FSU by a margin of 41-19. UNC pulled down 19 offensive rebounds, leading to 19 second-chance points in the game.
"They had 19 offensive rebounds, and that was the same number of rebounds that we had," FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton said. "We've been a pretty good rebounding team when we concentrate. We have not been as consistent, but when you're giving up a team, a hungry athletic team, opportunities to get second shots when they're already talented enough to make most first shots it's a bad formula."
UNC scored 10 of its 19 second-chance points in the second half, and came away with 22 points in the paint that half.
Reggie Bullock (five offensive rebounds) and Jackson Simmons (four offensive rebounds) lead the way for UNC on the offensive glass. The big men didn't just box-out the FSU big-men, but they also chased down a number of long rebounds.
"A lot of them was long rebounds, but we just have to a better job collectively as a group just to be conscious of boxing out your guy and rebounding," said forward Terrance Shannon. "I feel like they did a better job of team rebounding than we did."
It was a put-back by Simmons with 3:09 that gave UNC a lead it wouldn't relinquish the rest of the way.
"We didn't utilize out athleticism and strength nearly as well as they did," Hamilton said.
Botched fast-breaks hurt FSU
On multiple occasions Saturday, Florida State looked like it had a fast-break opportunity on its hands, only to fail to execute and come away with nothing.
Early in the game both Ian Miller stole the ball and tried to slow up and draw a foul on UNC. Not only was Miller not fouled on the play, but he also failed to come away with any points. Late in the second half, both Terrance Shannon and Michael Snaer committed similar fast-break snafus.
"I think we had six breakaway opportunities that we did not finish in transition," Hamilton said. "Where we did not use good judgment and attack the basket. A couple times we crossed over and dribbled back into the defense, and we seemed to be uncomfortable using our left hand attacking the basket."
Snaer missed a lay-up attempt with 5:42 left after a Terry Whisnant steal. With 59 seconds left in the game, trailing by three points, Shannon came away with what would have been a critical steal, only to give it right back to UNC two seconds later.
"We just have to play smarter down the stretch," Shannon said. "Me and Mike Snaer had two critical steals down the stretch, we could have just brought it out and got into a set and tried to get better looks, but we went in and came out with nothing. That was an upperclassmen mistake that we just have to fix."
Whisnant confident from three
Early in the second half, sophomore guard Terry Whisnant did his best Devidas Dulkys' impression from beyond the arc. In a little more than three-minute stretch from 17:59 to 14:54, Whisnant knocked down all three of his three-point attempts as the teams traded baskets.
"It was an amazing feeling," he said of the stretch. "It felt like anytime I shot it, it was going to go in. I've got to give a lot of credit to my teammates hitting me in open spots and they were just telling me to shoot the ball."
Whisnant finished the game 4 of 7 from three-point range with 14 points. It was the third time in double figures for the sophomore form Cherryville, N.C. in the last four games.
"Coach is looking for me to be more aggressive and I've took it upon myself to make sure I'm more aggressive," Whisnant said. "Because that's what my team counts on me for and that's what my teammates expect me to do."
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