Love hits game-tying and go-ahead 3-pointers as Carolina ousts UCLA
Published 12:13 am Saturday, March 26, 2022
By EDDIE PELLS
AP National Writer
PHILADELPHIA — Caleb Love hit game-tying and go-ahead 3-pointers 37 seconds apart and North Carolina moved within a victory of its 21st Final Four, beating UCLA 73-66 on Friday night in a March Madness matchup of power programs.
Love, a sophomore, finished with a career-high 30 points, including six 3s and two game-clinching free throws with 7.8 seconds left. He scored 27 of Carolina’s 45 points in the second half, including one stretch of 10 straight that kept the Tar Heels (27-9) in the game.
North Carolina’s next game is Sunday against Saint Peter’s in a first-of-its-kind 8-vs.-15 matchup in the Elite Eight. The 15th-seeded Peacocks topped Purdue 67-64 earlier in the evening.
Nobody stood out more than Love, who was held to five points in last week’s win over Baylor, but managed one point more than that during the decisive 37 seconds. His go-ahead 3 came with 1:03 left and marked the last of 14 lead changes in the game that was also tied eight times.
Fourth-seeded UCLA (27-8) fell two wins short of its 20th Final Four. Last year’s season ended on a shot from near half court by Gonzaga’s Jalen Suggs. This time, Love did in the Bruins, who got 16 points from Jules Bernard and 15 from Tyger Campbell.
In their second-round win over Baylor, the Tar Heels squandered a 25-point lead only to pull things together and pull out the game in overtime.
That game got dicey once Brady Manek got tossed for throwing an inadvertent elbow. Manek played all but two minutes in this one and finished with 13 points.
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