- Saturday, March 25 1995 -
NCAA Southeast Regional Finals (at Birmingham, AL)
Kentucky - 61 (Head Coach: Rick Pitino) - [Final Rank 2nd by AP]
North Carolina - 74 (Head Coach: Dean Smith) - [Final Rank 4th by AP]
Halftime Score: North Carolina 34, Kentucky 31
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|Arizona State 97 - 73|||||Maryland 96 - 84|
Game Writeup - Courtesy of Dr. Jeffrey Neil Burch; Dr. J's UK Newsletter, Vol. 4 No. 37. (All Rights Reserved)
Turn Out the Lights, the Party's Over:
Kentucky's season came to a crashing halt as the team played well initially against North Carolina, but eventually decayed to very individualistic performances as the Tar Heels prevailed 74-61 and went to the Final Four.
UK got the tap and scored the game's opening points, on an 18 foot shot by Rhodes. Kentucky immediately pressed Carolina. Both teams shot poorly after that, with UNC sustaining misses by McInnis, Stackhouse, and Don Williams. UK countered this with a Riddick turnover and a Delk miss. Finally UNC tied the game on a Williams steal and layup, but then the Wildcats scored the next 8 straight points (on a pair of McCarty FTs, a Rhodes FT, a McCarty 3 which bounced in, and a pair of Epps FTs). After over 4 minutes of play, Carolina still had only 2 points.
When the score was 8-2 in UK's favor, Andre Riddick fouled Rasheed Wallace from behind during a UNC entry pass under the basket. Wallace bobbled the ball slightly (he was being double teamed by UK), and after solidifying his hold on the ball, he sharply swung his left elbow, which connected with Andre Riddick's jaw. Andre took exception to this, and put his hands around Wallace's throat before the 2 were separated. Officials conferred for a long time in making their final decision, and consulted the CBS monitors of play before issuing an incredible ruling. Riddick was assessed the personal foul for bumping Wallace, and Wallace was issued an unsportsmanlike foul for the elbow. But instead of placing the second unsportsmanlike foul on Riddick (who attacked Wallace), the officials erroneously gave the foul to McCarty, whose only participation in the play was to attempt to separate combatants. It appeared incredible that the officials could not distinguish between #10 and #40 for Kentucky, but they couldn't, and it was even more amazing that CBS later interviewed Dr. Hank Nichols, coordinator of all officials for the NCAA, who backed up the call against McCarty and assured CBS that the correct man had been identified.
At any rate, McCarty, Riddick, and Wallace sat down to cool off, and Epps made both of UK's FTs while Calabria hit only 1 of 2 for Carolina. Kentucky then went up 13-5 on a Landry layup and a Delk 3. From there on in, it was mostly Carolina, although Kentucky would occasionally sustain spurts to produce small, temporary leads. UNC scored on a McInnis drive, a Sullivan layup, a trio of Stackhouse FTs, and a Shammond Williams FT, to tie the game at 13-13. From there, UK led 14-13 on a Pope FT, and the Cats later went up 18-15 after a Prickett layup and Walker bank shot, but Stackhouse and Zwikker hit FTs and Stackhouse had a putback shot to put Carolina up. Delk's 3 pointer gave the Cats the lead again, but a 12 footer and 3 by Williams put Carolina up 24-23. UK went up 26-24 on a McCarty 3, and Rhodes added to this with a pair of FTs to go up 28-24, but this was UK's last lead as a Stackhouse basket and a Zwikker layup cut the margin to 29-28, and then a pair of Williams FTs put the Tar Heels up for good at 30-29. Stackhouse FTs and a McInnis driving shot were countered by a Rhodes 14 footer to provide the halftime margin of 34-31 Carolina. Riddick re-entered the game at the 5 minute mark of the half, and Edwards played briefly in the half's final minute. By halftime, Wallace had not scored, and Carolina had 11 turnovers against the Kentucky press. UNC was only 1-8 from 3 point range, but UK was only 4-20.
Wallace hit an 8 footer which was countered by a Delk 3 to start the 2nd half. A nice Epps-to-McCarty assist resulted in a layup which cut the margin to 36-35, but Carolina went up 44-37 on a Calabria 16 footer, a Stackhouse 3, and a Calabria 3 which was answered only by a McCarty dunk. Wallace hit a turnaround shot underneath, and Wallace hit a pair of FTs to pull out to 48-39. UK closed to 48-44 on a Delk 3 and a Sheppard layup, but UNC went up against 51-46.
By the 9 minute mark in the 2nd half, UNC led 54-49, which became 56-51 after a McInnis shot with only 2 seconds left on the shot clock. Williams had a putback basket to go up 58-51, but another Delk 3 cut the lead to 58-54. Carolina went up 62-54 on a Wallace dunk when UK's defense lapsed. UNC maintained 6 and 8 point leads as Kentucky could never sustain a run, nor stop the Tar Heels consistently on defense. Delk's 3 pointer with a little over 1 minute left made it 68-61, but a pair of Williams FTs and a Wallace dunk sealed the win. McInnis ended all scoring with a final dunk, and UK was sent home.
Rasheed Wallace and Andre Riddick fight each other after Wallace threw an elbow at Riddick's head
The two are quickly separated by the referees and other players