Danny Green and North Carolina made themselves comfortable when it counted on Duke's famously hostile home court. Because they did, the top-ranked Tar Heels claimed another conference title -- and maybe the inside track to a close-to-home postseason path.
Green had 18 points to make up for a shaky outing last time against the Blue Devils, and North Carolina scored the final 10 points in a 76-68 victory over No. 6 Duke Saturday night at Durham, N.C., to claim the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season championship.
Tyler Hansbrough finished with 16 points and 15 rebounds while surpassing the 2,000-point mark for his career in his third consecutive victory at Cameron Indoor Stadium, and Wayne Ellington also scored 16 for the Tar Heels (29-2, 14-2).
North Carolina blew an early double-figure lead and briefly trailed before closing strong, holding the Blue Devils scoreless for the final 5 1/2 minutes to claim its eighth consecutive victory and the top seeding in the ACC tournament in Charlotte -- and quite possibly took a big step toward the No. 1 seeding in the Charlotte-based East Regional.
"Our perimeter guys took it personally tonight," said Green, who shot one for 10 in the last Duke game. "We wanted to come out and knock down shots, play smarter, play better and take the crowd out of the game. We kept our poise when they came back."
Greg Paulus scored 12 of his 15 points in the first half for Duke (26-4, 13-3), which rallied from a 14-point first-half hole but missed its final 11 shots in slipping to the No. 2 seeding in the ACC tournament.
Duke had 15 shots blocked -- seven by Green and five by Deon Thompson -- and was held to a season-worst 32.9% shooting in losing at home for the first time since last February's North Carolina game.
Jon Scheyer's put-back with just over 5 1/2 minutes remaining gave Duke its only lead of the second half at 68-66 -- but that was the Blue Devils' last basket of the game.
Duke had good looks on three straight trips downcourt after that but came up empty on each, and that allowed North Carolina to take control down the stretch.
No. 11 Georgetown 55, No. 12 Louisville 52 -- DaJuan Summers' wide-open three-point basket with 40 seconds to play, his only shot in the second half, gave the Hoyas the victory at Washington.
The win gave Georgetown (25-4, 15-3) consecutive Big East Conference regular-season titles for the first time in school history.
The Cardinals (24-7, 14-4) had three chances to tie the score, but Jerry Smith missed a three-pointer with 21 seconds left. After Georgetown's Jeremiah Rivers missed the front end of a one-and-one, Earl Clark missed a contested three-pointer with an airball. Louisville got the rebound, but Edgar Sosa missed a three-pointer as time expired.
Austin Peay 82, Tennessee State 64 -- The Governors earned their sixth NCAA tournament berth and first since 2003 by beating the Tigers for the Ohio Valley Conference title at Nashville.
The Governors (24-10) tied the school record for victories in a season, set in 1956-57 and matched in 1976-77, by winning their fourth OVC tournament title in their 15th appearance. This was the fourth time in five years they had played for a trip to the NCAA tournament.
The Tigers (15-17), making their first appearance in the title game since 1998, haven't won the conference championship since 1994.
Winthrop 66, North Carolina Asheville 48 -- Michael Jenkins tied a Big South championship game record with 33 points and the Eagles (22-11) beat the Bulldogs (23-9) at Asheville for their fourth consecutive conference title.
Jenkins made six of nine three-point shots and keyed two second-half runs that helped the Eagles (22-11) clinch their eighth NCAA tournament berth in 10 years.
Seniors Jenkins, Taj McCullough (14 points) and point guard Chris Gaynor, who set a Big South career record for assists late in the game, won their 101st game in four seasons.
Belmont 79, Jacksonville 61 -- The Bruins clinched their third consecutive berth in the NCAA tournament by beating the Dolphins in the Atlantic Sun Conference championship game at Nashville.
Playing just a few miles from campus, Belmont (25-8) made 13 three-point baskets.
Shane Dansby's three-pointer with a little more than 16 minutes to play capped a 13-4 start to the second half as the Bruins ran away from the Dolphins (18-13), who were playing in their first Atlantic Sun title game.