Happy St. Patrick’s Day. As I stated in the game preview UNC has a pretty good record on March 17th. The record that concerns me the most is that MSU is 0-3 versus UNC in the NCAA Tournament. That kind of stat is vexing and will be referenced 113 times tonight if this game is close. At any rate there are some crazy games going on right now. I can only hope this game is not one of them. Live blogging after the jump.
8:23 PM: Doesn’t it figure. Get ready to watch the game and something goes down at work. I have missed the first five minutes and CBS is pulling away from the game again to show something else.
8:27 PM: Let me catch up here. Looks like good outside shooting for both teams. Two fouls on Wright early will pretty much sit him for the rest of the half.
8:28 PM: No mask for Hansbrough! Hurray!
8:29 PM: There is nothing I hate worse than having an opposing team in the NCAA Tournament hit almost every three they hoist up.
8:30 PM: Looks like classic Tyler tonight, that is if they choose to call the fouls.
8:33 PM: UNC 21 MSU 18. Roy is gambling with Wright back in there.
8:34 PM: Big time defense by Ginyard. UNC up five.
8:35 PM: Hansbrough is currently channeling Sean May. 11 points already.
8:36 PM: Oh great. MSU shooting 20% higher from 3 pt range so far than they usually do. How many freaking times is this going to happen to UNC in a tournament game?
8:38 PM: Shut up Dick Enberg. Great hustle by the Heels. Sometimes Wright gets a bad rap for being a little lax, not there, he was on the floor for that one.
8:39 PM: In case anyone is just dying to watch it, ESPN is showing college wrestling. Fairly good game from UNC so far, especially considering they have gotten nothing from Wright in terms of points.
8:41 PM: Wright in the house!
8:42 PM: Conventional wisdom says MSU cannot shoot like that the whole game. That was great defense in general for UNC but at the same time that shot was born out of giving up an offensive rebound.
8:43 PM: Wright really is a 50% FT shooter. He always seems to hit only one of two FTs. Bad call on the Ginyard over the back IMO.
8:45 PM: Dear Lord. I want Lawson to come back one more year just so I can be entertained. UNC up
five. Make that seven. Hansbrough is a beast tonight! Make it eight and Tyler has 14.
8:48 PM: MSU has no answer for Tyler in the first half. UNC by nine.
8:50 PM: UNC is a little unproductive on offense without Lawson and Hansbrough in the game. Terry is not having a great game so far. He is very capable of picking it up. UNC up five at the final TV timeout of the first half.
8:55 PM: It is a little disconcerting that UNC got up nine and kind of went flat after that. Geez, Ellington never misses FTs and he just missed one.
8:57 PM: I think it is important UNC lead at halftime. UNC up five with one minute to go.
8:58 PM: Jay Bilas is commenting that Roy seems to be having a little trouble, not sure what that is about. UNC up six with 26 seconds left.
9:01 PM: The Hokie fan Coke commercial is funny in the respect it does not seem to work for basketball.
9:03 PM: Great defense to end the half! That was a huge momentum shift to get the steal and then the basket to go up eight at the break.
9:05 PM: Standing by for some asinine comments from Seth Davis…
9:11 PM: Instead they takes us to Indiana-UCLA which will probably lead to some asinine comments by Len Elmore.
9:12 PM: MSU has been red hot from outside, but that is the only complaint I have. I also think UNC is doing a good job of jumping out in the pass lanes and being generally disruptive to the offensive flow for the Spartans. Like I said conventional wisdom stipulates that a hot shooting team inevitably cools off in the second half. If that happens UNC needs to extend this lead and bury these guys my the 10 minute mark.
9:18 PM: Since the UCLA-Indiana game is so far behind us I can safely assume that they will not be breaking away to show us that one.
9:24 PM: 2nd half and MSU still hitting the threes! I really hate that. Lawson answers and UNC is up five.
9:26 PM: MSU has cut it to three. Wright has three fouls and Roy leaves him in. MSU has foul trouble on the interior.
9:27 PM: How can the official standing right in front of the play not know what the call is?
9:29 PM: The officials seem to have a predilection for making calls with stranges and exaggerated signals.
9:31 PM: They need to let Hansbrough bang those foul trouble Spartan big men.
9:32 PM: MSU leads….UNC needs to get control back and they do get the lead from a Thompson layup.
9:33 PM: UNC is having one of those stretches where they seem at a loss on offense, probably because MSU has adjusted to what they were successfully doing in the first half.
9:36 PM: I wish Ty Lawson was a better FT shooter.
9:37 PM: Wow. UCLA 20 Indiana 13 at halftime
9:38 PM: UNC needs to pound the ball inside. Several MSU players with three fouls should be less effective defensively.
9:40 PM: I am confused as to where the foul was there. I did not see anyone touch they guy. MSU up two.
9:41 PM: Hansbrough! UNC now leads by one. MSU has one player with four fouls. Time for some defense.
9:42 PM: How screwed up is that? Lawson gets out on the break and falls down before he can get the ball.
9:44 PM: UNC acts like they expect MSU to start missing shots or turning the ball over so they can convert. The halfcourt offense has been woeful unless Tyler has the ball.
9:46 PM: So they have shutdown Neitzel for MSU but apparently the rest of the team has gotten on track.
9:47 PM: Terry is sick? That explains a lot and a crappy time to have it happen.
9:48 PM: Tyler is singlehandedly carrying this team right now. Game tied at 54.
9:49 PM: I really despise plays where the ball takes an odd bounce right to an opposing team ‘s player who then gets a three pointer out of it.
9:52 PM: Get the freaking rebound!!! You cannot play 35 seconds of defense and then not grab the freaking offensive board!!!
9:53 PM: How many times are we going to give them offensive life and have them kill us with a three?
9:54 PM: Nietzel has six three pointers. That is utterly ridiculous. MSU has a second player with four fouls. That has to start taking a toll. UNC now up 1. We need a stop.
9:56 PM: Neitzel is killing us. And I am not going to be happy if we go down because one guy absolutely played out of his mind…well…then again it is not the first time this season it has happened so I should not be surprised I suppose.
9:57 PM: Here is the odd thing. UNC is outrebounding MSU on both ends but it seems like MSU has gotten more out of the offensive rebounds they have gotten.
9:59 PM: Terry is having a repeat of the Jeff Lebo game in 1987 versus Syracuse.
10:00 PM: Terry gives UNC the lead from the FT line. Time for a stop.
10:01 PM: Lawson! Hansbrough! UNC up three and Izzo wants to talk about it.
10:03 PM: Tough break there. Could not grab the rebound after a rare Neitzel miss.
10:04 PM: UNC by one as we enter crunch time.
10:05 PM: 31 points for Tyler. Ginyard with a huge steal. Lawson for three! UNC up six!
10:07 PM: Crap! Offensive foul on Wright! That is huge. UNC had momentum and a chance to go up 8.
10:09 PM: UNC now up seven.
10:13 PM: Time to salt this away. And we turn it over. This #2 for MSU has been at the line a lot and he is good shooter.
10:14 PM: Finally Terry! Terry for three! He woke up finally.
10:17 PM: Wow. Terry, despite being sick, showed up big time.
10:18 PM: UNC up eight with 1:28 left. Now all we need to is hit free throws.
10:21 PM: Any toughness questions now? UNC weathered the storm and now up 10 with the ball and one minute left, UNC will move on to the Sweet Sixteen.
10:22 PM: If I were Indiana I would be embarassed to only have 27 points with 9 minutes to go. Of course UCLA’s 34 points are a travesty as well.
10:23 PM: Izzo is ripping his guys in the huddle, I guess for giving up the Terry three with 27 seconds left.
10:25 PM: UNC up 14 with 21 seconds left.
10:33 PM: HEADING FOR EAST RUTHERFORD!!! SWEET SIXTEEN BABY!