By Ryan Nelson
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Over the course of the NCAA Tournament, the Tar Heels seemed to have a new hero carry North Carolina to victory in every game. On Monday night in front of a packed University of Phoenix Stadium, Joel Berry II did exactly that for Roy Williams' team.
Berry dropped 22 points on Monday night to lead the Tar Heels to their sixth national title in a 71-65 victory over Gonzaga. The Tar Heels complete their 'redemption tour' a year after losing to Villanova in the national championship on a buzzer-beater.
Late in the second half, North Carolina's Isaiah Hicks made an emphatic move to the basket to extend the Tar Heels' lead.
But in what seemed to be a continuation of North Carolina's semi-final matchup with Oregon, Kennedy Meeks made the definitive play to seal the victory for the Tar Heels.
Gonzaga made things interesting from the very beginning and never stopped fighting. In the end of what played out to be a seesaw bout, the Zags couldn't overcome their turnover woes -- as Mark Few's team had 14 turnovers, versus four for the Tar Heels.
The Bulldogs were playing in their first ever national final in program history. Nigel Williams-Goss led Gonzaga in scoring on the night with 15 points.
Berry was awarded the Most Outstanding Player award.