|Hansbrough leads No. 1 Tar Heels past UNC Asheville 93-81|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 09 January 2008 16:18|
Hansbrough, who reached the 20-point mark for the eighth time in nine games, started the Tar Heels' decisive 13-4 second-half run with a momentum-shifting dunk over the nation's tallest player, 7-foot-7 Kenny George.
Ty Lawson scored 17 points and reserve Danny Green had 12 of his 14 in the first half for North Carolina (16-0), which never trailed in completing its first perfect nonconference regular season since 1998 and just its fifth in 50 years.
Bryan Smithson had 25 points and K.J. Garland added 16 for UNC Asheville (11-4), which had its three-game winning streak snapped. Many of George's 14 points came on feet-on-the-ground dunks and layups.
But the snapshot of the night belonged to Hansbrough, who took matters into his own hands after the Bulldogs closed within 54-45 one minute into the second half on Garland's 3-pointer.
Hansbrough stormed down the left side of the lane and threw a two-handed dunk over George's outstretched arms, sending the crowd at the Dean Smith Center into delirium.
After Ellington's one-handed dunk capped the run and made it 67-49 with 14:14 left, UNC Asheville didn't get closer than 10 points the rest of the way.
The Tar Heels iced it by reeling off nine straight points after George's layup made it 84-74 with 5 minutes left.
Ellington had his second straight dominating performance, coming three days after scoring a career-best 36 points in the Tar Heels' Atlantic Coast Conference opener at Clemson - a victory he sealed with a last-second 3-pointer in overtime.
Vincent James added 11 points and George had 11 rebounds for UNC Asheville, which shot 53.2 percent yet fell to a combined 0-6 against the Kansas and North Carolina teams coached by Asheville native Roy Williams.
Deon Thompson added 10 rebounds for the Tar Heels, who flirted with a turnover-free first half before backup forward Mike Copeland couldn't keep control of the ball in the paint with 4 seconds left, leading to a layup at the buzzer by Garland that made it 53-40.