Archbishop Stepinac High School graduates RJ Davis and AJ Griffin will be a part of a historic meeting when North Carolina (28-9) and Duke (32-6) meet in the NCAA Division I men’s basketball Final Four in New Orleans on Saturday.
The two rival programs from the Atlantic Coast Conference, located less than 10 miles from each other, will be meeting for the first time in the NCAA tournament. Duke and North Carolina are scheduled for an 8:49 p.m. start.
Griffin finished with a team-high 18 points, three rebounds, one steal and one block for Duke in its 78-69 victory over Arkansas in the West Region final in San Francisco on Saturday. The freshman was 7 for 9 from the floor and 2 for 3 from beyond the three-point arc.
“You know, we never doubted as a team, a young team too,” said Griffin, who had 11 points, seven rebounds, one assist and one block in a 78-73 Sweet 16 win two days earlier over Texas Tech.
“Just we knew what we were capable of, and we just wanted to show the world. We got hungry guys and like I said, we just want to show the world, and we knew what we were capable of.”
Davis contributed nine points, four rebounds, four steals and three assists as North Carolina ended the Cinderella run of St. Peter’s with a 69-49 victory in the East Region final in Philadelphia on Sunday. The Tar Heels scored the game’s first nine points and led, 38-19, at halftime.
In the 73-66 Sweet 16 win over UCLA two days earlier, Davis had 12 points, seven rebounds and three assists.
Davis and Griffin led Stepinac to the New York State High School Federation AA championship in 2018. Both earned spots on the all-tournament team.
PHOTO COURTESY OF DUKE UNIVERSITY