North Carolina’s Joel Berry II battled through an ankle injury to help lead the Tar Heels to a 71-65 win over Gonzaga in the national title game. His performance earned him the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award.
“My teammates believed in me,” Berry said after the game. “You know, I had a hard game the other night. My teammates said just keep on pushing, keep on pushing. And I couldn’t do it without ‘em. My coaches helped me as well and I wasn’t at 100 percent but I gave it my all.”
He continued: “I said I want to see this confetti fall [for] us. And we’re the winners. We came out here and competed and it came down to the last second, but we are national champs now.
“My teammates believed in me.” – Joel Berry #NationalChampionship #GoHeels pic.twitter.com/REi4L7QxYs— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) April 4, 2017
Berry finished Monday’s game with 22 points, six points and three rebounds and averaged 13.8 points per game during the tournament. He averaged 14.5 points for the year.
UNC’s Kennedy Meeks, Gonzaga’s Nigel Williams-Goss, UNC’s Justin Jackson and Gonzaga’s Zach Collins were also named to the all-Final Four team.