Despite two bad ankles, UNC’s Berry named outstanding player

North Carolina's Joel Berry II answers questions after a practice session for their NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball semifinal game Thursday, March 30, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) – North Carolina’s Joel Berry II, hobbled by two bad ankles, played a strong championship game after a clunker in the semifinals and was named the outstanding player of the Final Four.

The junior guard and floor leader scored 22 points and handed out six assists in the Tar Heels’ 71-65 victory over Gonzaga on Monday night.


Berry bounced back from a 2-for-14 shooting performance against Oregon on Saturday to make 7 of 19 shots against the Zags in an ugly foul-filled game.

During the postgame celebration, he acknowledged he wasn’t 100 percent but said he gave it his all. Berry said, “It came down to the last seconds but we’re champions now.”

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