The ACC finals are set with the 5th-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels set to do battle with the 3rd-seeded Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
North Carolina advanced to the title game with a 71-67 victory over top-seeded Virginia. Notre Dame knocked off 2nd-seeded Duke 74-64.
In the second round, the Tar Heels knocked off 12th-seeded Boston College in convincing fashion, 81-63. North Carolina then advanced to take on the 4th-seeded Louisville Cardinals and defeated them 70-60 to set up the semifinal encounter with Virginia. North Carolina never trailed in the game and held off a late rally by the Cavaliers. For a team that has had its toughness questioned throughout the season, Roy Williams’ guys are playing the best basketball of the season at the right time.
Notre Dame received a two-round bye for being a top four team in the regular season. In their first game, the Fighting Irish knocked off Miami, which could have essentially popped the Miami bubble to get into the NCAA Tournament. The semifinal contest against Duke was much hyped as the two teams split the regular season series 1-1 and both teams are two of the most efficient teams in the country. Notre Dame rolled out to a 15-5 start en route to the victory setting up the matchup with North Carolina.
North Carolina and Notre Dame only faced off once this season, with the Fighting Irish holding on for a 71-70 victory in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels did themselves no favors down the stretch, shooting 1-14, including missing their final 7 shots. Notre Dame is looking for its first ACC and conference tournament title in the program’s history, while North Carolina is looking for ACC Tournament victory number 14. These two teams weren’t supposed to reach this point, but they have and it sets up an exciting final for the ACC Tournament title.