"He's big and he can shoot and he's good," Krzyzewski said in the postgame press conference. "He's talented. What else do you want to know?"
Before the start of the second half, Duke held a 40-38 lead over the Tar Heels, bolstered by first-year Cam Reddish's 17 points at the break. To that point, White had recorded a humdrum seven points on 3-6 shooting, having yet to put his stamp on the game.
Then, as is often the case with White this season, it happened.
His layup with 15:29 to go put North Carolina ahead 52-50, a lead that Duke would not regain the rest of the night. His three second-half 3-pointers gave the Tar Heels separation, then his assist with 7:21 remaining to Garrison Brooks for a dunk sent the Chapel Hill crowd into delirium.
"Yeah, Coby took over," Williams said. "When it came to hitting threes and hitting open teammates, he took over the game, and he kind of opened it up for us."
White spent the entirety of his night going up against Duke’s Tre Jones, who played all 40 minutes. Jones got the better of White in the first matchup of the year, an 88-72 UNC win on Feb. 20. That day, White managed nine points on 3-14 shooting, sinking just one of his six 3-point attempts and turning it over six times.
"Obviously, I don't want to play as a bad as I did there, but I think after that game I told myself I have to play better," White said. "Big time players show up in the big-time moments."
This time? Eight of 18 shooting in 36 minutes, three assists and zero turnovers.
White wasn’t the only young Tar Heel to pitch in on senior night. Brooks recorded 10 points and five rebounds, and first-year wing Nassir Little added nine points, all of which came in the first half to help keep North Carolina afloat early.
"It means a lot, man," Little said when asked about his 2-0 record against Duke. "First year here, and to play like we did at home in front of our amazing fans, and being able to send the seniors out the right way – means a lot to me."
Later, White talked about the impact those seniors have had on him in his short stint in Chapel Hill.
"I was emotional for them," he said. "They are three great seniors. Three great players, but they're even better off the court as individuals and men."
While UNC's graduating players will leave with memories aplenty – an ACC regular season title, a national championship for Maye and Williams, among others – the team's younger players, led by White, ensured the veterans had one more night to remember.
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