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Off the cuff: Has there ever been a game that goes into overtime where one team outrebounded the other by 33? North Carolina outrebounded Ohio 63-30. It was the most rebounds by a UNC team in an NCAA Tournament game.

But UNC's 24 turnovers - none of which were committed by Kendall Marshall's replacement Stilman White - along with 12 Ohio three pointers made the game close.

It was the first time Carolina has played an overtime game this season but the Tar Heels seemed much more comfortable during the extra five minutes than did Ohio.

D.J. Cooper, Ohio's star point guard, played particularly poorly in the overtime as he put up two wild, extra long three-point shots (one of which that was maybe between 35-40 feet away). Cooper, who was guarded well by White and others, hit only three of 20 shots.

Barnes similarly struggled for the Tar Heels as he hit only three of 16 shots.

Zeller was the big man with 20 points and 22 rebounds becoming the first player to get more than 20 points and 20 rebounds in an NCAA Tournament game since Wake's Tim Duncan in 1997. He's the first Tar Heel to ever do it.

He won't have any other small teams he can dominate so the Tar Heels have to have more production from Barnes and many fewer turnovers to go any further without Kendall Marshall.

It's unlikely that Marshall plays in the Elite 8 game Sunday. If he can go, it would at least provide some stability, even playing with one hand. If he can't go, it's unlikely that the Tar Heels will make it to the Final Four.

On the other hand, if the Tar Heels were to upset Kansas, I think Marshall would be back for the Final Four, where anything could happen.

Tar Heels 73, Ohio 65
Bullock outside, Zeller inside, Ohio out

North Carolina, playing without point guard Kendall Marshall, overcame 24 turnovers with timely outside shooting by Reggie Bullock and inside play by Tyler Zeller to knock Cinderella Ohio out of the NCAA Tournament 73-65 in overtime. (3/23) Click here for a photo gallery.

Bullock started the overtime with a three from the top of the key to give the Heels a 66-63 lead that they would never relinquish. A minute later Harrison Barnes, who hit only three of 16 shots, stopped and popped one in for a 68-63 lead with 3:20 to go.

The threes that carried the Bobcats in the second half - they hit eight of them - stopped falling in overtime and the Tar Heels wrapped up the victory with six straight free throws, including the final two by Stilman White, who stepped in for Marshall, who was out with a fractured wrist.

Despite turnovers in bunches, the Tar Heels seemed to have the game under control in the first half with a 26-11 lead but Ohio started hitting threes, a trend that lasted throughout regulation. The Bobcats cut the margin to 29-22 at the half despite hitting only 23 percent of their shots.

Zeller, who had 11 first-half points, controlled the backboard most of the game as the big man led Carolina with 20 points and 22 rebounds becoming the first UNC player in history to accomplish more than 20 points and 20 rebounds in an NCAA Tournament game.

While Zeller may have been the player of the game, it took steady guard play by White (six assists and no turnovers) and five big three pointers by Bullock (17 points and 10 rebounds) to secure the victory.

The Tar Heels trailed 61-60 in regulation when Bullock canned a three from the right wing to put the Heels up 63-61 with 40 seconds left.

Ohio's Walter Offutt, who led all scorers with 26 points, drove in to tie it with 25 seconds left and had a chance to give the Bobcats the lead as he was fouled by White. But Offutt missed the free throw and Carolina had a chance to win it at the buzzer.

After a timeout with 15 seconds left, UNC coach Roy Williams called a play for Barnes but he was stripped of the ball as he went up for a shot and the Bobcats got off a long shot at the buzzer that went off the rim to force the overtime.

"We had some guys that stepped up and made some huge plays," White said. "Nobody on the team seemed worried."

One of those plays was a James M. McAdoo steal and dunk midway through the second half. Another was a John Henson block on a Bobcat fastbreak that seemed destined to put Ohio up by six. Ohio never led by more than four.

Barnes, who had more bad plays than good, did make a big three after the ball was kicked back out to him following his missed free throw. With 3:21 left, and the Heels down by three, Barnes popped it in from the top of the key to tie it at 57-all.

Without any one of those plays, the Tar Heels wouldn't have made it into overtime where they shined. The Carolina players were not excited in the lockerroom despite making it to the Elite 8.

"Ohio played the better game," Zeller said. "I think we felt like we got away with one."

Coach Williams said the players were not satisfied and were exhausted. He said he felt they needed to enjoy the win but understand that they've got to play better.

The Tar Heels, now 32-5, play Kansas on Sunday at 5:05 p.m. for the right to go to the Final Four.


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