CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — Before tip-off, thousands of UNC-Chapel Hill fans took to Franklin Street to watch another edition of the Tar Heels’ basketball rivalry with Duke.
UNC freshman Jules Greenway could feel the high energy.
“Like the whole day kind of feels like a holiday,” Greenway said. “Everybody here is so into it.”
But late Saturday night, it was Blue Devils fans leaving Chapel Hill elated, while the UNC faithful sat in disappointment.
“The day was amazing, but coming into the loss brought me down,” one fan said.
Still, UNC students like Mike Wei are taking a positive approach to a tough loss against an archenemy.
“All that matters is that we ruined their game last year,” he said. “And that’s what matters to me.”
Wei even commended Duke for their performance.
“They were really good at what they did, and they showed us what’s up,” he said. “It’s a lot of fun.”
Now that the regular season series is over with a Blue Devils sweep, some Tar Heels fans are ready to take their mind off Saturday’s loss.
“[We will] get back to studying, one more week before spring break,” Wei’s friend Charles said. “We’ve gotta finish strong academically since, unfortunately, we couldn’t in basketball.”
It was still an exciting day for many of the fans. One restaurant said their tables were booked within three minutes of becoming available for the game.
Before the game, Duke fan Erin Wall said she had high hopes for her team. And her wishes were granted.
“We went to New Orleans for the Final Four last year, and I sat in a Carolina section and that was really hard,” she said. “So I’m hoping for redemption tonight. I hope I’m in a big Carolina section, because I really need some redemption for us to win.”
Of course, the season isn’t over yet for UNC or Duke. Both teams and N.C. State still have the ACC Tournament starting next week.