Gardner-Webb vs North Carolina

No. 11 UNC rebounds from loss with rout of Gardner-Webb wire reports

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Roy Williams admits he's thrown a lot at his young North Carolina players to get them ready for the season. It sounds like he's about to demand a little more from them.

Deon Thompson matched his career high with 22 points to help the 11th-ranked Tar Heels beat Gardner-Webb 93-72 on Monday night, bouncing back from their first loss of the season with a relatively easy win against an overmatched nonconference opponent.

Tyler Zeller added 16 points off the bench for the Tar Heels (5-1), who led by double digits most of the way and had little trouble with the instate Big South Conference program. It was the 599th victory for Williams, now in his seventh year at his alma mater following 15 seasons in Kansas.

Williams was pleased with his team's effort against the Runnin' Bulldogs (3-1) -- even though the Tar Heels watched Grayson Flittner put on a 3-point shooting display that matched a Smith Center record -- and said his team might have been a little tight early by trying to do everything perfectly after last week's loss to Syracuse.

But he also was frustrated with the Tar Heels' shaky free-throw shooting and 11 second-half turnovers.

"These kids, they're good kids, they care about what's going on," Williams said. "They're always concerned about what happened last game so I expected some of that.

"I did tell the guys in the huddle one time that we're getting close to that point that I'm not going to play everybody just because I like their smile, that you've got to produce when you get out there."

North Carolina was ranked sixth last week before falling to Syracuse 87-71 in the final of the 2K Sports Classic on Friday night in New York. The Tar Heels led by two at halftime of that game before watching the Orange open the second half with a 22-1 run to take control before finishing the game shooting 54 percent.

It reminded everyone that despite the fact the Tar Heels are more talented than the last time they had to reload following a national championship run, they are still young in key positions and still learning how to blend numerous skilled players into a cohesive unit.

For example, Williams experimented for the first time with playing sophomore point guard Larry Drew II and his backup, freshman Dexter Strickland, together for stretches.

"He's definitely trying to see who plays well together and who meshes well together," said Thompson, who had 10 rebounds. "Coach is still trying to find out what this team is about."

The Tar Heels' frontcourt production hasn't been much of a question mark, at least. Thompson, who scored his 1,000th point late in the first half, hit 9 of 11 shots while Ed Davis had 15 points and 13 rebounds. Zeller hit 6 of 8 shots and played through getting a small cut over his right eye early in the second half that required two stitches.

Behind that trio, North Carolina got 58 points in the paint and took just four 3-pointers for the entire game.

"When we're playing a team that their starting 4 [man] is 6-3, we're going to try to get the ball into the post," Davis said.

Flittner scored 32 points and hit nine 3-pointers to match the Smith Center record for any player. The Runnin' Bulldogs shot 38 percent, but hung around by hitting 15 of 36 3-point attempts.

"I thought our kids played hard, but obviously we were overmatched," Gardner-Webb coach Rick Scruggs said. "I mean, North Carolina is so big, long and athletic and it's hard as heck to play against those guys."

North Carolina led by 15 points at halftime and 21 points early in the second half. It shot 56 percent and took a 50-32 rebounding advantage against its undersized opponents, but made only 18 of 33 foul shots -- the kind of performance that won't be good enough come Atlantic Coast Conference time.

Flittner hit six 3s in the first half, but the Tar Heels used a 12-0 run midway through the first half to build a 35-17 lead on a dunk by Davis off a turnover with 8:05 left. Zeller scored on a rebound just before halftime to make it 53-38.

The Tar Heels scored on three straight possessions to open the second half, pushing the margin to 59-38 on a stickback dunk by Davis with 18½ minutes left.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Heels forward Deon Thompson puts up a team-high 22 points along with 10 rebounds. (AP)
Heels forward Deon Thompson puts up a team-high 22 points along with 10 rebounds. (AP)
Gardner-Webb (3-1)383472
North Carolina #11 (5-1) «534093
GW:Grayson Flittner 32 Pts
GW:Joshua Henley 10 Reb
GW:Grayson Flittner 6 Ast
NC:Deon Thompson 22 Pts
NC:Ed Davis 13 Reb
NC:Marcus Ginyard 6 Ast

Related Video

September 22, 2017
Immanuel Quickley commits to Kentucky (0:44)
September 21, 2017
Season Preview: Aaron Jordan
September 21, 2017
Top College Basketball Storylines leading up to the season
September 19, 2017
Season Preview: Da'Monte Williams

CBSSports Shop

Men's Nike White Villanova Wildcats 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt

Villanova Wildcats 2016 National Champs
Get the Locker Room Gear!
Shop Now

North CarolinaGardner-Webb
Deon Thompson
Grayson Flittner
Gardner-Webb Bulldogs
G. Flittner, G3710-193-356232
J. Henley, F293-90-210246
B. McNair, G284-80-01419
A. MacMillan, C251-60-06042
C. Hailey, G241-60-01132
L. Engelken, F172-50-02146
T. Staton, G121-42-20325
D. Brown, G101-50-00102
S. Johnson, F91-10-01012
A. Silver, G-F62-40-02126
J. Moore, G-F30-20-00000
B. Burrell, GDid Not Play
B. Jackson, GDid Not Play
M. Maden, CDid Not Play
K. Manley, FDid Not Play
Totals 26-695-728192372
North Carolina Tar Heels
M. Ginyard, G-F314-90-05618
E. Davis, F296-123-8130115
L. Drew II, G243-50-14516
D. Thompson, F239-114-4101122
W. Graves, G-F132-50-02114
D. Strickland, G162-50-01314
T. Zeller, F156-84-650116
J. Henson, F131-21-23203
D. Wear, F121-30-22002
T. Wear, F111-45-63007
J. Watts, G51-10-01112
L. McDonald, G40-01-20101
M. Campbell, G10-00-00000
T. Petree, G10-00-21100
J. Gallagher, F10-00-00000
T. Thornton, G11-10-00003
Totals 37-6618-335021893
Atlantic Sun
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
No. Florida8-615-19217
S.C. Upstate7-717-16229
Kennesaw St.7-714-18259
N.J. Tech3-1111-20290

TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
N. Carolina14-433-75
Florida St.12-626-914
Notre Dame12-626-1023
Va. Tech10-822-1148
Miami (Fla.)10-821-1242
Wake Forest9-919-1439
Georgia Tech8-1021-16106
NC State4-1415-17141
Boston College2-169-23219
Other games
Cincinnati 67 Final
App St 53 Final
Louisville 80
WIN 66 Final
CLEM 102
Purdue 73 Final
Tenn 72
MD 79 Final
Iowa 60 Final
Texas 85