CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. – In a second straight poor offensive outing, the No. 7 North Carolina men's basketball team (6-3, 1-1 ACC) fell to No. 5 Virginia (8-1, 2-0 ACC), 56-47, on Sunday. The Tar Heels sank just one three-pointer and shot 37.8 percent from the field in the loss.
The first four-minute segment of the game effectively set the tone for the rest of the day.
At the first media timeout, which came at the 15:40 mark of the first half, North Carolina led 2-0 with the only bucket coming from junior forward Garrison Brooks. To that point, the two teams were a combined 1-10 from the field with six turnovers.
The next four minutes weren't much better; the Cavaliers' first points didn't come until the 14:38 mark with a trio of Mamadi Diakite free throws, and with 11:37 to go until halftime the teams were tied at five.
Back-to-back triples from Virginia woke the crowd and helped open up a (seemingly insurmountable) seven-point lead before guard Leaky Black answered with a layup on the other end.
Later, another trey from Diakite stretched the lead to 17-9; forward Armando Bacot temporarily quieted the crowd with a dunk on the ensuing possession.
Though the Cavaliers kept up the stifling defensive pressure, UNC was able to string together a few scores before halftime to stay in it. At the break, Virginia held a 24-18 lead, with nine of the Tar Heels' points coming in the final 5:03 of the period. First-year guard Cole Anthony led the way with five first-half points, but was just 2-9 from the floor and missed both of his three-points attempts.
UNC's first 13 points of the second half came from the combination of Black, Bacot and Anthony – all underclassmen – but at the 12:04 mark, North Carolina trailed 39-31.