For the 261st time in their storied rivalry, Duke and North Carolina squared off with the eyes of college basketball locked in on Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
The schools, separated by just 10 miles, faced each other as top-10 opponents for the 49th time as a packed crowd filled the Smith Center.
The Carolina faithful did not leave disappointed.
DUKE AND NORTH CAROLINA RIVALRY TIPS OFF FOR 261ST TIME, 49TH AS TOP-10 TEAMS
No. 3 North Carolina trailed for just 53 seconds, handing No. 7 Duke its third ACC loss with a 93-84 win in Chapel Hill.
A roaring crowd cheered North Carolina to a 10-point halftime lead, and fifth-year senior Armando Bacot proved why he’ll go down as a Carolina great.
Bacot scored 12 first-half points and grabbed eight rebounds, while junior forward Harrison Ingram went 3-6 from the 3-point line, chipping in 11 points, six rebounds, two steals and a block.
Bacot finished his night with 25 points and 10 rebounds, and Ingram shot 5-9 from deep with 21 points and 12 rebounds.
Duke was unable to rally after digging itself a first-half hole.
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The two guards were the offense for Duke in the first half, with senior guard Jeremy Roach knocking down two of three attempts from beyond the 3-point arc for 10 first-half points, while freshman Jared McCain had nine points and seven rebounds.
Sophomore Kyle Filipowski, who was seventh in the ACC in points (17.5) per game heading into the matchup, was largely held in check in the first half, scoring just six points on 3-7 shooting from the floor.
The sophomore got going in the second half, finishing the night with 22 points on 9 of 17 shooting, but it was too little too late for Duke.
On Thursday, North Carolina head coach Hubert Davis highlighted the challenges Filipowski poses for a defense. The third-year head coach was pleased with how his team – specifically Bacot – handled the sophomore on Saturday.
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“One of the things that we always – even as a player – defensively, yes. He’s a handful, but you have to go at him on the defensive end,” Davis said Filipowski. “And I thought Armando did that. I thought Armando made him play defense. And that’s something I think really helped us tonight.”
The win by Carolina snaps a two-game home losing streak to Duke, and the Tar Heels are now two games up in the loss column on the Blue Devils in the ACC.