UNCASVILLE, Conn. —
Brice Johnson’s block of a Harrell dunk attempt brought the surprisingly partisan UNC crowd into the game. His rebound dunk and foul shot cut the Louisville lead to 33-31, but Smith answered with his fourth 3-pointer of the half.
The Tar Heels scored the next six, taking the lead on a pair of free throws by Paige at 37-36.
The teams went back and forth from there before Paige buried a long 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer to tie the score at 44.
“I think they made a good change in the second half,” Jones said. “They clogged the lane and played that high zone so me and Russ couldn’t penetrate. That’s something we have to learn. I don’t think we passed the ball as well was we have all year.”
Louisville, which was playing its first games away from home during this tournament, had not lost since last Feb. 9 when it dropped a five-overtime affair to Notre Dame.
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