North Carolina crushes East Tennessee State
Chapel Hill, NC (Sports Network) - Leslie McDonald had 14 points and five rebounds in No. 20 North Carolina's 78-55 thrashing of East Tennessee State.
Brice Johnson tallied 12 points and eight rebounds, while Reggie Bullock added 10 points for the Tar Heels (7-2), who have won 78 straight home games against unranked non-conference foes.
"We were just knocking down shots, sharing the ball, finding the open teammate and playing Carolina basketball," said Bullock.
The Tar Heels improved to 7-0 all-time against the Buccaneers.
Rashawn Rembert led ETSU (2-5) with 18 points.
The Tar Heels stormed out of the gate and jumped out to a 34-4 lead a little over 15 minutes in. McDonald netted eight points and Bullock added seven points during the vigorous start.
East Tennessee State didn't tally a point from the 12:27-4:20 mark of the opening half and didn't reach the double-figure mark until Lester Wilson's 3- pointer cut the deficit to 41-12 with 1:43 remaining in the stanza.
North Carolina took a 42-12 edge into the break and led by as many as 36 over the final 20 minutes.
"Any small victory you can take away from this, you've got to try to take away," East Tennessee State coach Murray Bartow said about his team outscoring North Carolina, 43-36, in the second half. "We could have totally caved in and quit. I thought the guys had a lot of fight in the second half."
North Carolina shot 42.5 percent (31-of-73) from the floor, while East Tennessee State finished 33.9 percent (21-of-62) from the field ... The teams hadn't played since 1987 when UNC prevailed, 118-65 ... UNC recorded 16 assists on its 17 made field goals in the first half.
12/09 01:16:30 ET