In front of a decidedly pro-UNC crowd, Brandan Wright scored a team-high 20 points on 10-of-12 shooting – on dunks mostly.
“Brandan did a great job for us inside and also was able to run the floor,” Roy Williams said.
The Tar Heels (27-6) have now won three in a row since dropping back-to-back contests last week. They will try for their 16th ACC Tournament crown and their first since 1998 Sunday at 1 p.m. versus upstart 10-seed NC State (18-14) – 72-64 winners over three-seed Virginia Tech in Saturday’s second semifinal.
“There were a couple of times we let up a little bit, but we have to be happy about the fact we almost played a complete game,” Marcus Ginyard said. “As long as we understand we still have strides to make, and that we’ll have to play a big-time game tomorrow.”
Carolina’s stifling man-to-man defense held the Eagles to 24 percent shooting from the floor in the first half and the Tar Heels executed its break to precision in taking a 38-23 halftime lead.
Boston College (20-11) got as close as nine points on Sean Marshall’s third three-pointer. But just as he did when the two teams met Chestnut Hill three weeks ago, Reyshawn Terry answered the Eagles best attempt at a run with a three of his own. The next time down the court, a Ginyard steal and pass to Wright for a slam quickly restored order, as UNC led 55-41 with 12:04 to play.
“It just happened,” said Terry, who had seven points, four rebounds and a pair of assists. “Tywon [Lawson] got the ball to my side and I was able to convert the shot. I just try to lead by example, but for the most part this whole team has done a great job of stepping up.”
One game removed from a career-high 32-point performance versus Miami, Tyrese Rice got a jersey full of Lawson, who held the BC guard to five points on 1-of-9 shooting.
“I thought our defense was better today than it’s been in a while, and I thought Ty Lawson was sensational,” Williams said.
The Wolfpack and Tar Heels will face each other in the championship for the sixth time with Carolina holding a 3-2 advantage.
UNC is 79-37 all-time in tournament play, second only to Duke (80-38). The Tar Heels have played 28 finals, but haven’t reached the title game since 2001.
“I know we haven’t won it in awhile, but that just kind of adds to the fact; we want to win it because we’re here and we’re playing,” said Tyler Hansbrough, who pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds.