First-half offensive explosion keys Carolina victory

(Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) /

UNC Basketball scored more points in the first half against Michigan than they did in the entirety of their last game.

UNC Basketball had a historically bad shooting performance against Michigan State in the PK80 tournament. They shot just 24.6 percent from the field and 5.6 percent from three-point range and scored 45 points. On Wednesday against Michigan, Carolina blew those numbers away in the just the first half.

The Tar Heels scored 51 points in the first half and shot better than 64 percent from the field and 54 percent from beyond the three-point arc to take a 14-point lead into halftime. They coasted to an 86-71 win over the Wolverines in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.

Luke Maye is back to scoring in bunches. He scored a game-high 27 points on 11-of-16 shooting. He also had six rebounds and three assists. Kenny Williams and Joel Berry both finished in double figures with 12 and 17 points respectively and each had three three-pointers. Theo Pinson had a very Theo-Pinson-like stat line. The senior had eight points, a team-high seven rebounds, a game-high six assists, a block, and a steal.

Michigan hung with Carolina for most of the first half. However, the Tar Heels ended the half on a 17-5 run over the last six minutes.

Michigan (6-2) had two players reach double digits. 6-foot-11 forward Moritz Wagner scored 20 points for the third time this season and the second straight game. He also had nine rebounds. Junior guard Charles Matthews scored 12 points on 50 percent shooting from the field and from three-point range.

What’s Next

No. 13 North Carolina (6-1) will play their next game on Friday, Dec. 1 at the Spectrum Center. They play in-state foe, Davidson (3-2) of the Atlantic 10. The Wildcats are playing a steady diet of North Carolina teams. They have beaten UNC-Wilmington and UNC-Charlotte but lost to Appalachian State.

Next: NC State Basketball holds on to beat Penn State

Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET and will be televised on ESPN2.