The annual face-off between Duke and North Carolina at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham was a game with meaning, as two of the top-rated teams in the country turned traded blows. Carolina pulled away late for a convincing win.
Duke, ranked #6 in the latest AP Poll, took a 52-45 lead into halftime, but the #3 Tar Heels stormed back in the second half, outscoring the Blue Devils 25-13 to start the 2nd stanza. North Carolina finally assumed the lead on a Wayne Ellington 3-pointer midway through the second half and extended their edge to 4 points on Ed Davis' short jumper.
Ellington's make was timely, being the only three made from seven he threw up. Carolina maintained their edge from there and expanded it to 78-71, when Ty Lawson hit a pair of jumpers 15 seconds apart with just over 7 minutes left. After Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough hit his only attempt at a 3-pointer at 13:58, making it 83-71, the Cameron Crazies were silenced and North Carolina had cemented their credentials as the class of the ACC.
Lawson led all scorers with 25 points on sharp 8-11 shooting and 9-9 from the free throw line. Kyle Singler led the Blue Devils with 22. Jon Scheyer had 20.
The Tar Heels had five in double figures plus Bobby Frasor with 9. Carolina improved to 22-2 overall, and first place in the ACC at 8-2. Duke dropped to 20-4 and 7-3.