The Associated Press
In the semifinals of the Battle 4 Atlantis, Villanova emerged victorious with a score of 83-81 over No. 14 North Carolina. Justin Moore, with 16 points overall, made a significant contribution in overtime with five points while Eric Dixon dominated with a career-high of 34 points and 10 rebounds. The game took place in Nassau, Bahamas and was a close match throughout.
On Friday, Villanova (5-1) will compete in the championship game against the victor of the Arkansas-Memphis matchup. Meanwhile, North Carolina (4-1) will battle for third place.
Cormac Ryan, a guard from North Carolina, made a 3-point shot from the corner after receiving a good pass from Elliot Cadeau, bringing the score to a tie of 68 with only 34.4 seconds remaining in the game. Moore then slowly dribbled the ball down the court and passed it to Dixon for a 3-point attempt, which unfortunately did not go in. North Carolina called a timeout and advanced the ball to midcourt with only 3.3 seconds left. RJ Davis inbounded the ball and attempted a 3-point shot while off balance, but it bounced off the back of the rim.
Moore’s three-point play with 2:08 remaining in overtime secured the lead for Villanova. Mark Armstrong also contributed 10 points to the team’s victory.
Davis was the top scorer for North Carolina, scoring 23 points. Harrison Ingram contributed 20 points, but had to leave the game due to a foul with 3:44 remaining in regulation. Ryan ended with 18 points, while Armando Bacot had eight points and a whopping 18 rebounds.
In the first half, Dixon scored 20 points and secured a 32-31 lead for Villanova with two successful free throws in the final nine seconds. However, Davis responded with a 3-pointer for UNC to take a one-point lead at halftime.
Dixon had a 66.7% field goal percentage, making 6 out of 9 attempts. He also made all 3 of his 3-point shots and all 5 of his free throws in the first half.
Receive notifications and stay updated on the AP Top 25 basketball polls throughout the season. Click here to sign up.
The AP has a hub for college basketball, featuring their top 25 rankings and news updates, which can be found at https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball.