"The key to us is James," said Carolina's Wood, who had 14 points and 10 rebounds in the final game. "He's not 100% yet, maybe 80%. This tournament just shows how good he is." Worthy scored 16 points and grabbed seven rebounds against Arkansas, but just as important as those numbers were his four steals and his defensive presence inside.
Arkansas had jumped back on top at the half, 27-26, by smothering Worthy in its zone, but when Hastings picked up his fourth and fifth fouls within seven seconds and went to the bench with 10:23 to play, the Hogs were sunk. Hastings scored 20 points against North Carolina and was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player.
"For a young team," said Smith, "it's important to win against good teams like the ones here. Our players came up here not knowing what to expect. But now this team has won something and has established its own identity."
Unless Carolina's performance in Alaska turns out to be a case of mistaken identity, the Tar Heels may just be one of those teams that can do it all.