Pittsburgh, led by an incredible performance from senior guard Jamarius Burton, defeated #25 North Carolina 76-74. Burton posted a game high 31 points on an unbelievable 14-17 shooting from the field and 6 rebounds, while, Blake Hinson added 16 points and 6 rebounds. Armando Bacot paced North Carolina with 22 points and a game high 13 rebounds. Junior guard RJ Davis added 16 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists.
After trailing UNC 40-34 at the half, thanks to the Tar Heels shooting 51 percent from the field and 46 percent from deep, the Panthers turned the tables in the second half. Behind a ferocious defensive effort, Pittsburgh, held the Tar Heels to 33 percent shooting from the field and 11 percent from 3-point range, out scoring UNC 42-34 to pull off the comeback win.
Here are some takeaways from the game as the Panthers improve to 10-4, 3-0 in the ACC. Pittsburgh will next host #13 Virginia this upcoming Tuesday.
Jamarius Burton: (Pictured Above)
Burton was off the charts the ENTIRE game....on both ends, especially offensively. North Carolina's head coach Hubert Davis summed things up perfectly during his post game press conference when asked about Burton's performance, ''Nobody on our team could guard him." Burton was deadly efficient all night, taking his time to get to his spots in the mid and low post and score on a multitude of moves. As special as his 31 point outing was, defensively, Burton was just as effective. On ball, help side, rotating, communicating, rebounding, Burton did it all and was the main reason Pitt was victorious.
Hinson was huge in Pittsburgh second half comeback win, which includes, the go ahead three pointer with 1:28 left in the game. Burton was the constant all game when it came to scoring for the Panthers, Hinson gave him some help in the second half, scoring 11 of his 16 points. Seven of those eleven points came during the remaining 1:28 of the game. Hinson is Pittsburgh leading scorer for a reason and during the Panthers win over North Carolina, he proved that he is fully capable of closing out games.
Second Half Defense:
Was something special to watch from Pittsburgh. They shut the Tar Heels water off, only allowing 7 points for a nearly eight minute span, in which they scored 19 points to climb back in the game. UNC's junior guard Caleb Love came in to the game the leading scorer for the Tar Heels, averaging 18.3 points per game. Love scored 7 points total on 3-9 shooting with only three points coming in the second half. This a summation of how locked in Pittsburgh was on the defense end in the second half as they battled back for the home win.
Bacot was dominant, despite, constant double teams from all over the floor. The senior All ACC selection shot 8-14 from the field, finishing with 22 points...grabbed a game high 13 rebounds, including 5 offensive, dished out 3 assists and blocked 2 shots. He was the constant bright spot for UNC and nearly led UNC to a road win over a tough Panthers team.