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UNC 82, Davidson 60: Tar Heels shake off early offensive struggles to down the Wildcats

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Cam Johnson led the way once again as UNC got back in the win column.

Davidson v North Carolina Photo by Lance King/Getty Images

It wasn’t the sharpest performance you’ll ever see, but UNC was able to shake off early shaky offense to convincingly beat Davidson Saturday afternoon. At one point, the Tar Heels trailed the Wildcats by five points. UNC managed to go on a couple of big runs that allowed them to pull away and not look back even before halftime.

Cameron Johnson excelled once again, leading the team in scoring with 17 points and seven rebounds. There were some turnover issues for Cam in the game against Kentucky, but he managed to not turn it over even once against Davidson. Kenny Williams finished the game with 12 points, five rebounds, and five assists. Garrison Brooks and Luke Maye each had 11 points each but Luke was a force on the boards with 14 rebounds.

Sporting a new look for his hair today, Coby White seemed to be a different player. He facilitated as well as we’ve seen him do in Carolina blue, dishing out seven assists and grabbing seven rebounds. His shot was still not falling the way we saw it in Las Vegas, but he did exactly what he needed to as the Carolina point guard today.

The team was sloppy with the ball early, turning it over seven times in the early going. Thankfully, from there, they were able to tighten things up to finish the game with 14 to Davidson’s 13. UNC won the rebounding battle, 49-33, and assisted on 20 of their 59 field goals.

One obvious area of improvement today was on the defensive end. Carolina looked much better at forcing Davidson into shots they didn’t want and generally applying more pressure than they have in recent games. The Wildcats were without their leading scorer, so there is still work to be done, but the team definitely seemed to take at least a small step forward in a couple different important areas.

The turnovers are still too high, and a number of those seemed to come from someone passing the ball to a teammate who wasn’t paying attention. Davidson was content to shoot a very high number of threes (38) because that’s the way their team plays, and they made ten of them. It gave the Heels a different look to defend as they prepare to head into conference play.

UNC has one more tune-up left before conference play starts against Pittsburgh. The Tar Heels will host Harvard at the Smith Center on Wednesday.