Wednesday, February 23, 2011

It feels like a rivalry again despite Carolina's 10th straight win vs. NC State

Despite the fact that North Carolina has now beaten N.C. State 10 straight times, it feels more like a rivalry after UNC's 75-63 victory in Raleigh.

Wolfpack coach Sidney Lowe got a technical foul. Wake County deputies were stationed behind the Carolina bench. Players woofed at each other a little and players screamed after dunks. The intensity was there.

N.C. State players certainly played with more intensity than they did at Chapel Hill. The State fans were into it and stayed in it even when Carolina got up by nine points twice in the second half. The fans didn't throw in the towel until Zeller's dunk follow with a minute left gave Carolina an 11-point lead.

The Lowe technical really was a silly technical that hurt his team. With the Tar Heels up 67-59 and a minute and a half to go, Lowe complained that one of his players was fouled. Not only did replays show a clean blocked shot but Carolina got free throws AND the ball.

The game had gone back and forth with State leading by 10 points in the first half only to lose the lead by halftime. Plus, the Pack was within four points with five minutes to go.

The Tar Heels have won 16 of the last 17 games but this was a hard-fought game that was not determined until the last few minutes. With young key players on both squads, this could continue to feel like a rivalry again for some time to come.

For more on the UNC-NCSU game, please click here.

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