Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Memorable Tar Heel wins over Wolfpack

When you've beaten N.C. State as many times (26) as UNC has since 1994, the victories tend to run together but here are five to remember for the Tar Heels, who are 11-1 against the Wolfpack under coach Roy Williams, to go with our earlier list of five memorable Wolfpack victories:

1) Feb. 22, 2006 @ N.C. State

"Herb's Waterloo"

You could write a book about the implications of this game but here's the Reader's Digest version:

In what was a rebuilding year for UNC, the Tar Heels came to Raleigh with two freshmen starters (and Wes Miller) and beat a veteran N.C. State team by 24 points (95-71).

It's not that UNC won, it's the way the Heels won and Herb Sendek lost, a sixth straight to Williams.

Two months later, Sendek would retreat to Arizona State.

2) Feb. 12, 1997 @ N.C. State

"Dean's Last Stand"

The second of three classic State-Carolina games in Dean Smith's final season and Sendek's first.

For a game in the 40s — UNC won 45-44 — it was a whale of a contest. The Old Barn was electric from tip, to State's 28-19 halftime lead, to the final game-winning sequence for the Heels.

Ed Cota's baseline runner gave UNC a 45-44 lead with 4.8 seconds left. N.C. State's Danny Strong, who had already hit four 3-pointers, had a chance to win the game at the buzzer with a 3 from the right corner but Vince Carter leapt out of the rafters to block the shot and give Smith a win in his final game at Reynolds Coliseum.

3) Jan. 15, 1997 @ UNC

"The Steve Norton game"

At 0-3 in the ACC, UNC desperately needed to beat the Wolfpack. But with 2:34 left in the game, UNC was down nine points.

A series of follies in the final minute, including an errant inbounds pass by reserve Wolfpack forward Steve Norton — who inexplicably played 27 minutes that night — led to an epic UNC comeback.

The Heels scored the game's final 12 points to win 59-56 and they would go on to win the ACC and reach the Final Four.

4) March 9, 1997 @ Greensboro

"The Shammond Williams Game"

The final installment of the Herb-Dean trilogy. State, playing for the fourth time in as many days at the ACC Tournament, pushed the Heels into the second half but Williams' outburst — 19 of his game-high 23 points came in the second half — carried UNC to a 64-54 win and ended State's memorable run.

It turned out to be Smith's 13th and final ACC title.

5) Jan. 28, 2004 @ UNC

"Enter Roy"

UNC's four-game losing streak to N.C. State from 2001 to 2004 was the longest in the series since the Wolfpack won nine straight in the early 1970s, with a little help from David Thompson.

The four-game streak ended with Roy Williams' first game in the series as a head coach. UNC beat State, 68-66 at the Smith Center behind the trio of Raymond Felton, Sean May and Rashad McCants.

Williams went to win the next six games and 11 of 12 in the series.

-- J.P. Giglio


Anonymous said...

What a depressing article (I'm a State fan)

Anonymous said...

Wait, why are they memorable if the tarholes are so bent on proving that playing state means nothing to them? They sure do like to brag when they win, but act like it's nothing when they lose...

Anonymous said...

If you think these are memorable, let's go back to January 17, 1979 when Dudley Bradley stole the ball from Clyde "the glide" Austin and rammed home a two-handed dunk for the game winner. Now THAT's memorable!