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CHAPEL HILL — After suffering insult and injury in Wednesday night’s blowout loss to Ohio State, North Carolina doesn’t have time to feel sorry for itself.

With a trip to Charlottesville to meet defending national champion Virginia on Sunday afternoon, the Tar Heels have to find a way to move on without freshman big man Armando Bacot, who Roy Williams expects will “Be out for a while” after suffering a sprained left ankle.

“We can’t just sit here and dwell on this loss because Virginia is a great team and we know what they bring, so we’ve just got to lock back in,” senior Brandon Robinson said on Wednesday night.

The matchup couldn’t come at a worse time after the Buckeyes forced the Tar Heels into a historically bad shooting performance, using much of the same pack-line defensive philosophy that the Cavaliers have built their program on.

OSU ranks second nationally in defensive efficiency while the Cavaliers coming off a stunning loss of their own — are first, allowing an average of 43.9 points per game.

That bodes poorly for a Carolina offense that has found itself in the wrong side of the record book more often than not this season, still searching for its first 80-point performance while falling to 28th on Thursday in offensive efficiency per KenPom.com as it struggles through its worst production since 2010.

Williams wanted to take the blame, but his players vehemently disagreed.

“It's on us; we've got to play a lot better,” graduate transfer Justin Pierce said. “We've got to come out with more of a fire. Coach is one of the best to ever do it … They're coaching us, they know how to be successful, they've won national championships and we're not doing what we're asked to do right now.”

It’s obvious on tape and it’s obvious on the stat sheet, where the Tar Heels were outrebounded 48-32 by OSU, while scoring just 10 points in the paint and five on the fast-break — all cornerstones of the program’s identity.

The primary and secondary breaks aren’t executing at a high level, and when Carolina has been forced to go into its freelance offense toward the end of the shot clock, things have been even worse.

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“We’ve got to pass, cut, move and set great screens,” Pierce said. “We’re not setting good screens right now and I think that’s why we’re not getting as open of shots right now.”

The only way to beat the pack line is with sharp movement — players and the ball — and getting the ball into the paint to draw double teams.

None of that happened on Wednesday, and if it happens again on Sunday, the Tar Heels will be in for a long afternoon.

“We were really, really stagnant,” senior Shea Rush said. “The ball wasn’t moving, we weren’t moving as a team and when you have a pack-line defense, it makes it really tough to score.”

Right now, Carolina, ranked 258 nationally in 3-point percentage and 286 in 2-point percentage, needs every open shot it can get. In the eyes of Rush, who has been on three teams that finished in the top 10 nationally in offensive efficiency, the only solution is playing harder.

“If you’re playing harder, things are just going to happen and we talk about that,” he said. “If you’re moving harder cutting harder, you’re going to get more open shots.”

Pierce, who came in with a reputation as a sharpshooter, hasn’t found his jumper yet this season, hitting 7 of 26 from 3-point range, while Christian Keeling (4/19) nor Andrew Platek (3/18) have been able to give the Tar Heels what they need on the perimeter.

“We’ve got some good shooters on this team and right not, we’re not getting clean enough looks,” Pierce said. “Once we hit our shots, we’re going to be fine. Andrew is a really good shooter; he’s struggling right now. Christian is a really good shooter; he’s struggling right now. We’ve just got to have guys step up.”

Whether it’s effort, clean looks or creating easy buckets, something has to change by Sunday or Carolina will again be left looking for answers.

“We’ve got to show up ready to play against the defending national champions,” Pierce said.