N.C. State 7, North Carolina 0, 7:12 remaining in first quarter
Situation: N.C. State ball, third and goal on North Carolina 9-yard line.
The play: Wolfpack quarterback Brandon Mitchell connected with Tavares Copeland on an underneath slant route for a 6-yard gain.
Why it mattered: The Wolfpack had all the momentum, scoring an early touchdown after UNC’s Bryn Renner threw an interception on the second play of the game. But the Tar Heels’ defense came up with an important stop to keep N.C. State from going up by two touchdowns.
N.C. State 10, North Carolina 0, 4:46 remaining in first quarter
Situation: North Carolina ball, second and 2 on N.C. State 7-yard line.
The play: UNC’s Marquise Williams ran for a 3-yard gain to the Wolfpack 4-yard line. At the end of the play, N.C. State’s D.J. Green dove at Williams, hitting the Tar Heels quarterback in the head. Green was called for targeting on the play and ejected.
Why it mattered: With the Wolfpack’s premier linebacker out of the game, Williams connected with Quinshad Davis for a 2-yard touchdown on the ensuing play, setting the stage for the Tar Heels’ comeback.
N.C. State 10, North Carolina 7, 2:39 remaining in first quarter
Situation: N.C. State ball, fourth and 8 on N.C. State 30-yard line.
The play: After Davis’ touchdown, the Tar Heels’ defense forced the Wolfpack offense into a three-and-out. N.C. State decided to fake the punt, but Robert Caldwell ran into UNC’s line and lost a yard.
Why it mattered: The Tar Heels scored a touchdown four plays later and took their first lead of the game.
N.C. State 16, North Carolina 14, 9:43 remaining in second quarter
Situation: North Carolina ball, first and 10 on North Carolina 41-yard-line.
The play: The Tar Heels, who have not been afraid to use trick plays against N.C. State, resorted to trickery again – receiver Ryan Switzer took a handoff from Bryn Renner and then threw a pass to Davis, who had got behind Wolfpack defensive back Jack Tocho.
Why it mattered: The Tar Heels never trailed again.
North Carolina 21, N.C. State 19, 11:45 remaining in fourth quarter
Situation: North Carolina ball, second and 13 on N.C. State 38-yard-line.
The play: With N.C. State’s defense trying to keep its sputtering offense in the game, Williams connected with Bug Howard for a 24-yard reception. Howard made a nice play on the sideline, outjumping Wolfpack defensive back Juston Burris.
Why it mattered: North Carolina scored a touchdown on its next play, giving it an eight-point lead heading into the final 11 minutes.
Jack Daly, Correspondent
The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.
Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email email@example.com to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.Read moreRead less