North Carolina Falls to Alabama in Four Overtimes


Players celebrating win.

Christopher Hay, Staff Writer

On Sunday, November 27th, 2022, The number one ranked North Carolina Tar Heels faced off against the Alabama Crimson Tide.North Carolina had just come off a loss against the Iowa State Cyclones, 70-65. Both teams were on fire from the get-go; at the end of the first half, Alabama was leading by just three, 37-34. By the end of the second half, North Carolina came back, scoring 43 to Alabama’s 40. Regulation ended with a score of 77-77, which meant overtime; that overtime ended up being four overtimes. 

At the end of the game, Alabama’s Charles Bediako had a clean block and the refs blew the whistle calling a goaltend. They went to review the play and found out the ball was still going up and it was a clean block. They ruled it an inadvertent whistle; For the people that do not know what happens next after an inadvertent whistle is blown, it causes the ball to be dead and no one has possession. The refs went to the arrow on the sideline and it favored Alabama. With 9.3 seconds left on the clock, Jalen Bradly of Alabama throws the ball inbounds to Mark Sears, and Seth Trimble of the North Carolina Tar Heels tips it out of Sears’ hands and it becomes North Carolina’s possession. Pete Nance of the Tar Heels throws it inbounds and it gets stolen by Charles Bediako. The Tar Heels foul Jalen Bradly and he misses the first free throw but makes the second free throw, and North Carolina has a chance to win the game. With 4.1 seconds left in the game, Leaky Black of the Tar Heels throws it inbounds to RJ Davis. RJ manages to get up the court and with 1.2 seconds left on the clock, he bumps into Alabama’s Brandon Miller to try to create contact to get three free throws. It doesn’t work and he shoots it from half-court and misses. Alabama wins 103-101. 

I interviewed Travis Earlywine because he watched the North Carolina/Alabama game.  The first question I asked was, “Can the Tar Heels come back after such a tough loss? Travis’ response, “Yeah. It’s early in the season and teams are going to take losses, especially early in the season. I’m a Kentucky fan, so I don’t care if they come back or not.” The second question asked, “Do you think North Carolina should fall from first to eighteenth after two straight losses?” Travis’ response, “I don’t think so. I get that, but it’s hard to believe you can go from first to eighteenth. Because they played two great teams, so maybe tenth, eleventh, or twelfth. Somewhere in that range.” The third question asked, “What are your opinions on this North Carolina and Alabama game?” Travis’s response was, “It was a heck of a game. Back and forth the whole time. Players made big-time plays. Well coached. Shots went in when they needed them. It was one of the more exciting early-season games you’ll watch.” Travis also added, “That controversial goaltend and they changed the call. It was the correct call to overturn the call. That was not a goaltend, that ball was way up in the air. The ball was not coming down, it was far from the goal.” 

The rankings will change. It’s still early in the season. If you are a North Carolina or Alabama fan, you should be excited about the rest of the season.