North Carolina Sends It to Overtime at the Buzzer, Edges Ohio State in Extra Period to Notch 89-84 Win

By Griffin Strom on December 17, 2022 at 5:45 pm

Ohio State needed one stop for a win in regulation.

But after a Brice Sensabaugh jumper put the Buckeyes up two with two seconds left on the clock, North Carolina’s Pete Nance drilled a turnaround jumper to send it to overtime at the buzzer. From there, the Tar Heels took over to claim an 89-84 win in the CBS Sports Classic at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Team 1 2 OT FINAL
#23 OHIO STATE 44 35 5 84
NORTH CAROLINA 35 44 10 89

Multiple double-digit second-half leads weren’t enough for Ohio State to hold off a late Tar Heel tide at the Mecca. The 23rd-ranked Buckeyes, who led by as many as 11 in the final 20 minutes, let last year’s national runner-up hang around before ultimately taking a lead in the final two minutes.

Ohio State crumbled late in the final frame as Armando Bacot led North Carolina to a comeback win in front of a pro-Tar Heel crowd at the CBS Sports Classic matchup. Hubert Davis dialed up a full-court press that flustered the Buckeyes into committing multiple turnovers, and North Carolina took its first lead of the second half with just 1:29 to play on an RJ Davis 3-pointer.

Nance’s buzzer-beater provided an extra lift going into overtime, and although Ohio State had a chance to tie the game with a three with 13.4 to play, it turned the ball over on a Zed Key travel that effectively ended the game following a pair of game-sealing free throws at the other end.

Bacot (28), Caleb Love (22) and Davis (21) combined to score 71 points for the Tar Heels while Sensabaugh led Ohio State with 22. Bruce Thornton added 17 points of his own and Justice Sueing tacked on 16.

First Half

Ohio State broke the ice with the first five points of the game, but North Carolina came roaring back right after. A Caleb Love three from the top of the arc gave the Tar Heels their first lead of the game, 9-6, in the opening four minutes, and North Carolina went into the first media timeout on an 11-1 run to take a five-point lead.

With the pro-North Carolina crowd ready to blow the roof off at MSG, the Buckeyes silenced the Tar Heel faithful with a stellar stretch thereafter. Ohio State embarked on an 18-2 run from 13:22 to 8:32 to open up a 12-point advantage following four straight fastbreak points. The Tar Heels missed 11 of their 12 shot attempts in a six-minute span that helped allow the Buckeyes to come alive.

Justice Sueing and Brice Sensabaugh combined to score 15 of the Buckeyes’ first 26 points, and back-to-back triples from Bruce Thornton and Sensabaugh gave Ohio State a 34-20 edge with 6:01 to play in the opening period. But Sensabaugh picked up his third foul just over a minute later to send him to the sideline as Armando Bacot began to take over for North Carolina.

The 6-foot-11 big man scored 11of-13 points for North Carolina during one stretch, including 10 straight to cut the Buckeye lead to six points with 3:10 to play in the half. Bacot finished with 16 points to lead all scorers in the first half, and had 14 of those in the final 8:19.

Sueing closed out a hot half of his own (13 points) with a 3-pointer right before the buzzer to keep Ohio State up nine points at the half. Ohio State converted 11% more of its field goals and hit six more 3-pointers than North Carolina, but the Tar Heels attempted nine more free-throw attempts as Bacot did well to draw contact from Buckeye defenders inside.

Second Half

If momentum hadn’t already started to switch late in the first half, North Carolina made it clear to see at the start of the second. While Ohio State missed six of its first seven shots to open the final frame, the Tar Heels embarked on a 10-2 run to cut the Buckeye lead to one point.

84 POINTS 89
34-74 (45.9%) FGM-FGA (PCT.) 32-72 (44.4%)
9-24 (37.5%) 3PM-3PA (PCT.) 6-28 (21.4%)
7-14 (50.0%) FTM-FTA (PCT.) 19-27 (70.4%)

But Ohio State continued to answer often enough to stop the Tar Heels from taking over completely. The Buckeyes rattled off six straight points to follow the aforementioned North Carolina run, and after Bacot cut the OSU lead to four at the 12:30 mark, Sean McNeil returned fire with a 3-point make on the very next Buckeye possession. Sueing’s first point of the half, a free throw at the 10:07 mark, gave Ohio State its first double-digit lead of the final period, 60-50.

North Carolina began to have success with a full-court press against the Buckeyes in the final seven minutes, and after causing two turnovers in a matter of moments another 3-pointer by Love cut the OSU edge to five points. North Carolina then scored four of the next five points in the contest to make it a two-point game with 4:32 to go.

After an OSU shot-clock violation, UNC tied the game 72-all with 2:10 on the clock, but Sueing responded with a tough bucket of his own to make it 74-72 Ohio State. Then the Tar Heels finally took the lead on a 3-pointer by Davis with 1:29 to go.

Ohio State got back out in front with two seconds left, but Nance knotted it up again at the buzzer.


North Carolina opened the extra period with back-to-back layups to take a four-point lead with 3:38 to play, and two Davis free throws made it a five-point game with 1:19 left.

Sensabaugh hit another clutch jumper with to make it a one-possession game with 48 seconds left, and Ohio State had the ball and a chance to win the game with a 3-pointer with 13.4 to go. But Key was whistled for a travel, Ohio State fouled on the ensuing Tar Heel possession and Davis closed out the game at the charity stripe.

Ohio State hit just two of its 10 shot attempts in overtime.

Game Notes

  • Eugene Brown (concussion) and Isaac Likekele, who missed Ohio State’s Big Ten opener to tend to a family matter in Texas, were both unavailable for the Buckeyes. Both players were with the team in New York, though.
  • With Likekele out, Brice Sensabaugh made his second straight start for the Buckeyes.
  • Saturday marked the 16th all-time meeting between the Buckeyes and Tar Heels, with North Carolina winning 12 of the previous 15.
  • Ohio State blew out North Carolina, 74-49, in the last matchup between the two programs, which took place in Chapel Hill in 2019.
  • Ohio State entered the weekend with a 23-13 all-time record in Madison Square Garden, but lost its last trip to MSG in a one-point defeat to Penn State during the 2018 Big Ten Tournament.
  • North Carolina forward Pete Nance, an Akron, Ohio, native, played against Ohio State five times in the past four years as a member of the Northwestern program.
  • The Tar Heels began the season as the No. 1-ranked team in the AP poll, but dropped out of the rankings following a four-game skid from Nov. 25 to Dec. 4.
View 160 Comments