North Carolina’s effort to bolster its NCAA Match resume by choosing up February nonconference video games backfired on Wednesday night time when the Tar Heels dropped an 83-70 choice to a Marquette staff that it added to the schedule simply 4 days in the past. The loss is the primary Quad 3 defeat of the season for the Tar Heels, who entered the night time as one of many “Final 4 in,” in keeping with the newest Bracketology from CBS Sports activities knowledgeable Jerry Palm.
North Carolina (14-8) will seemingly want a robust end in its remaining three scheduled common season video games in opposition to Florida State, Syracuse and Duke as a way to compete for an at-large bid to the Huge Dance after including what qualifies as its worst lack of the season so far. This was the second nonconference recreation added by the Tar Heels, who gained a Quad 3 recreation in opposition to Northeastern final Wednesday that they discovered after soliciting opponents through Twitter.
North Carolina’s freshman class, ranked No. 2 nationally by 247Sports, has been enhancing as of late, however the prime freshman on the court docket Wednesday was Marquette’s Dawson Garcia. The 6-foot-11 ahead scored 16 of his game-high 24 factors within the first half because the Golden Eagles opened up a 45-29 halftime lead. North Carolina pulled inside eight factors within the second half however struggled to interrupt via because the Golden Eagles (11-12) pressured 19 turnovers and held UNC to 5-of-18 3-point taking pictures.
The loss additionally denied UNC coach Roy Williams his 900th profession victory and should have been notably important for Marquette coach Steve Wojciechowski, a former Duke level guard who by no means gained a highway recreation in opposition to the Tar Heels throughout his enjoying profession. Marquette’s solely hope of creating the NCAA Match would seemingly be successful the Huge East Match, however their main scorers are Garcia and sophomore D.J. Carton, who regarded like stable constructing blocks for the longer term on Wednesday. Carton contributed 17 factors for Marquette.
The sport did convey not less than one shiny spot for the Tar Heels, although, as freshman heart Walker Kessler registered his third straight outing with 10 factors. Kessler had gone all season with out reaching double figures till his function started to extend in final week’s win over Northeastern. UNC was led within the loss by Garrison Brooks‘ 18 factors.