Local News

Miami 64, North Carolina 61, OT

Posted Updated

CORAL GABLES, FLA. — The North Carolina Tar Heels shot asif the baskets at the University of Miami's new arena were 20 feethigh.

North Carolina went the final 12:10 without a field goal andmissed all eight shots in overtime as the Hurricanes opened theiron-campus Convocation Center by winning 64-61 Saturday night.

``We may have taken some bad shots and rushed a few,'' saidNorth Carolina's Jawad Williams, who went 3-for-17.

Darius Rice hit a 3-pointer from the corner with 2.5 secondsleft to force overtime, then scored the only basket in the extraperiod.

North Carolina coach Matt Doherty was angry that no foul wascalled when Williams missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer astime ran out. A TV replay showed that Miami's Paulo Coelho appearedto hit Williams on the forearm as he shot.

Doherty screamed at the officials as they left the floor. ``I believe Jawad got hit,'' Doherty said. ``It seemed obvious.But they're a good officiating crew. It's human error. It's part ofthe game. The people in Miami can understand that better thananybody after last night's football game.''

A disputed interference call against the Hurricanes in overtimeproved pivotal Friday night in their 31-24 loss to Ohio State atthe Fiesta Bowl.

Williams said he was fouled on two shots he missed in the finalseconds. ``It's all right, because we're all human,'' Williams said.``I'm not worried about it. It's a game. Things happen. I'm notgoing to make every shot. They're not going to make every call.'' Joked Miami's Rice: ``Home court.''

The game drew 6,826 fans in the $48 million Convocation Center,which has 7,000 permanent seats. The Hurricanes averaged 4,651 fanslast season at Miami Arena, their home in downtown Miami since1988. ``Going down the stretch, just about every fan was on theirfeet,'' Miami's James Jones said. ``It was exciting. This is agreat experience for me and every guy on the team.''

Jones scored the first basket in the new arena and finished with21 points for the Hurricanes (7-4). They rallied from a 58-48deficit over the final seven minutes of regulation.

Rice, who had 17 points, scored on a follow to put theHurricanes ahead 62-61 with 2:21 left in overtime _ their firstlead since 41-40 early in the second half.

Rashad McCants had 14 points for the Tar Heels (8-4), who havelost four of seven after a 5-0 start. They shot just 31 percent andmissed their final 13 tries.

Raymond Felton had 12 points and Jackie Manuel added 11 for theTar Heels. They trailed 41-34 when their 18-point run began.

Stymied by North Carolina's zone defense, the Hurricanes went 7 1/2minutes without a point and failed to score on 11 consecutivepossessions. They committed four turnovers during the drought andmissed nine consecutive shots, including a blown dunk by James.

Consecutive 3-pointers by Melvin Scott and David Noel put theTar Heels ahead 58-47, but those were their last field goals. ``I had no doubt we were going to win the game,'' Rice said. ``Icame here to make big shots, and that's what I did.''

The crowd included Texas Rangers shortstop Alex Rodriguez, aMiami native, and Hurricanes football coach Larry Coker, whose teamlost Friday night to Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.

``We didn't come home with what we hoped to come home with, and that's the national championship,'' Coker told the crowd when introduced at halftime. ``Are we disappointed? Yes. Are we hurt? Yes. But let me assure you, it's not over for this university.We'll be back.''

Copyright 2023 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.