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Off the cuff: That was an amazing offensive performance by the Tar Heels against Duke. I thought they might win by eight or 10 points but I would have never thought they'd put up 100 points on that very good Duke defense. I was thinking something like 83-75. But it was appropriate that a Lawson dunk on a fastbreak gave the Heels 100 points.

Coach K said, "Lawson was a pro tonight." Well, pro caliber anyway although Duke's coach had to prefer that he was playing for the Golden State Warriors. "That was as well as any point guard has played against us in a while," Coach K added. He rightly said that Lawson played strong, smart, aggressive and put a lot of pressure on the Devils.

Looking back, the technical on Singler in the first few seconds of the second half for elbowing Hansbrough after the whistle had blown seemed to give Carolina a lift. Still, it took the Heels another five minutes to erase the eight-point lead.

Frasor's three three-pointers in the first half were big buckets. Tar Heel fans have to be happy that he got his shot back. Thompson looked like a world beater in the first few minutes of the game but then he only scored four points over the last 33 minutes of the game.

Another basket that might be forgotten but was a big one came when Green sank a three from the right corner late in the first half. Without it, Carolina would have been down 11 at the break.

Ellington had an off night shooting but his three that gave Carolina 67-65 lead midway through the second half was huge. It was the first time the Heels had led by more than a point since it was 34-31 plus the Heels never trailed again after that basket.

Hansbrough got two ticky tack fouls over an 11-second period in the first half that could have ruined the Tar Heels. It's strange that he can bang and initiate contact inside and not get called for that but then gets weird calls against him like those. Luckily for Carolina, he didn't pick up a third foul until late in the game, just a couple of minutes after draining an off-balanced three as the shot clock ran down.

Cameron Indoor Stadium was hot. That probably hurt Duke more than Carolina even though the Heels aren't as deep as they once were. The first thing to go in heat is spring in the legs and that's what is needed for an accurate jump shooter. Duke shot lights out in the first half at 62 percent but shot only 36 percent in the second half.

The condensation made the floor slippery. Maybe Cameron Indoor is on its last legs. The students, who apparently get sick camping out in anticipation of the big game, certainly don't intimidate Carolina players and have become nonfactors. They have actually become a caricature of themselves.

While it's exasperating to watch Carolina students try to emulate the orchestrated and rehearsed Dukies, I must say that the Crazies do stay and cheer until the final buzzer. I have said it a million times, in thousands of different ways, but you don't have to be classless to vehemently and loudly support your team. You don't have to paint your body and look for cameras to be a good fan.

Also, Dean Smith once told me that he had done a study about free throw percentages when fans waved their hands behind the basket and when they didn't... and there was no difference. So, save your energy to cheer for the Tar Heels and only even acknowledge the other team when they deserve it - either in a positive way for a tremendous performance against the Heels or in a negative way for bad behavior against the Heels (such as the Gerald Henderson foul against Hansbrough last year). It makes the other team's fans madder if you don't stoop to Dukie antics but simply act as if you are better than that. The word "obnoxious" doesn't have to follow the word "loud."

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Heels 101, Blue Devils 87
Lawson takes over in second half

North Carolina won for the fourth straight time at Cameron Indoor Stadium but it took some second half heroics by point guard Ty Lawson as he rallied the Tar Heels from an eight-point halftime deficit to a 101-87 victory over Duke. (2/11)

Down 52-44 at the half, the Tar Heels, now 22-2, outscored the Blue Devils 14-6 over the first five minutes of the second half. A Lawson alley-oop pass and bucket by Tyler Hansbrough tied it at 58-all.

The lead went back and forth until Wayne Ellington drilled a three with 10:58 to go that gave Carolina the lead at 67-65. Duke never led again as that shot started a 24-6 Carolina run that put the Heels up 88-71 with less than four minutes to play.

During that stretch, Lawson drove the lane several times for baskets or assists. He muscled down the lane aggressively for a bucket to give UNC a 71-67 lead. Later, he sank a runner in the lane and followed it up seconds later with a steal and a contested layup to put the Tar Heels up 78-71.

Lawson capped off the run with a pair of free throws and an old-fashioned three-point play as he blew by two defenders straight up the middle to basically wrap it up at 88-71 with 3:42 to play.

The Heels got sloppy at the end as their lead shrunk to eight before they truly wrapped it up with free throws. Free throws were big all night as the Cameron Crazies didn't bother Tar Heel shooters who hit 27 of 31 free throws for the game. Duke, on the other hand, was only 11 of 18 from the line.

Lawson finished with a season-high 25 points, including 21 in the second half, to lead five Tar Heels in double figures. Hansbrough scored 17 points while Danny Green and Ellington each tallied 15. Deon Thompson, who scored 10 points in the first seven minutes of the game, finished with 14 points.

Carolina actually led by 10 at 28-18 after a Bobby Frasor three pointer and got its biggest lead of the first half at 29-18 before Duke went on a big run.

The Blue Devils outscored the Heels 22-5 over six minutes to take control at 40-34. A pair of threes by Greg Paulus and another by Kyle Singler led the push.

Duke expanded the margin to nine before settling for that 52-44 halftime lead.

"That was a great second half for us," UNC coach Roy Williams said. "I was discouraged with our defensive play in the first half but we ended up shooting about 60 percent in the second half... We were really good in the second half."

Carolina shot 55 percent from the field for the game while Duke shot 48 percent, after sinking 62 percent of its shots in the first half, including six of nine from beyond the arc. The Heels held the Devils to just two of 15 from three-point land in the second half.

UNC capitalized on turnovers more than Duke as the Heels scored 25 points off turnovers while the Devils scored just eight.

Carolina, now in first place with an 8-2 league mark, plays at Miami Sunday night. Duke, which was led by Singler's 22 points, falls to 7-3 in the ACC.


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