Saturday, November 20, 2010

Bitter pill for Carolina as wild turn of events ends with Pack victory

North Carolina outplayed N.C. State for all but about 20 seconds during which the Wolfpack scored on, of all things, a two-yard tipped Hail Mary play on fourth down and an 87-yard punt return a couple of minutes later.

The Tar Heels, even though in control most of the day, settled for field goals instead of getting touchdowns and led 19-10 when the Pack scored those two touchdowns to take a lead they never relinquished, eventually winning 29-25.

UNC coach Butch Davis was not happy about a couple of non-calls for intentional grounding on State QB Russell Wilson. He said that if it were called like it should been, "the tipped ball in the end zone never happens."

It was a bitter pill for the 17 Carolina seniors who lost all four of their games against State. Three of last four games have been decided by a combined total of nine points.

One area that State dominated was in rushing and blitzing the quarterback with its linebackers. The Wolfpack sacked UNC's T.J. Yates seven times including in the last seconds for a safety.

N.C. State can play for the ACC championship with a victory next week at Maryland, something that apparently is a foregone conclusion to some. "This was a two-fer," State coach Tom O'Brien said. "We got to beat Carolina and play for the championship."

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