|Posted on March 10, 2018 at 1:00 PM|
Article by Dan Tortora
Welcome, to the rematch.
Two years ago, when the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) men's basketball tournament was held at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., the Virginia Cavaliers and North Carolina Tar Heels made it past their adversaries in their respective part of the bracket to meet one another in the title round.
The game ended with a mere four points separating North Carolina from Virginia, 61-57.
North Carolina knew the taste of defeat from the year before, when they fell to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, 90-82, in the 2015 ACC Tournament finals in the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, North Carolina. The Tar Heels lost three straight title games in the ACC Tournament from 2011 through 2013, to the Duke Blue Devils, Florida State Seminoles, and Miami Hurricanes, respectively.
Before Virginia got that same taste versus North Carolina in 2016, they had risen the ACC Tournament trophy themselves in 2014, when they stood atop Duke, 72-63, also in the Greensboro Coliseum.
Each with an ACC Tournament title within the last three years and both being runners-up, they have seen both ends of the spectrum in the ACC's most prestigious game of the season, and Virginia head-to-head has a score to settle.
The current ACC championship match-up features carry over on both sides, with Devon Hall and Isaiah Wilkins from the Cavaliers and Joel Berry II, Theo Pinson, and Kenny Williams of the Tar Heels having been on their respective rosters in 2016.
Hall and Wilkins both started the game for the Cavaliers, amounting nine points between them, with Hall accumulating seven and Wilkins with two, each playing in 22 minutes of the contest.
Berry was a starter in the 2016 title game, leading the Tar Heels with 19 points in 35 minutes to go with one steal, one assist, and no turnovers. Pinson came off the bench and played 12 minutes, with no points after not attempting a single shot. Williams also entered that game off of the bench and, like Pinson, had no attempts and no points.