No. 19 Heels Handle Coastal, 75-49
CONWAY, S.C. --- Antoinette Bannister had a team-high 13 points and No. 19 North Carolina held Coastal Carolina under 27 percent from the field as the Tar Heels scored a 75-49 victory Sunday afternoon at The HTC Arena. Tierra Ruffin-Pratt added 11 and Megan Buckland chipped in 10 for Carolina, while Angelica Henry had 15 to lead Coastal.
Erika Johnson made her first appearance for UNC after transferring from Cal last December and finished with eight points and nine rebounds in 22 minutes. Krista Gross also had eight points and nine boards to go with six steals as the Tar Heels forced 28 Chanticleer turnovers.
Coastal (6-3) closed within four late in the first half before a 12-3 run gave UNC a 39-27 lead heading into the break.
The two teams combined for just three points in the first five minutes after halftime before Carolina put together a run that effectively ended the game. Bannister made three-pointers on consecutive possessions to make it 56-32 and a steal and score by Brittany Rountree extended the lead to 26. Coastal would never get back within 20 as the Tar Heels improved to 25-5 all-time in the Myrtle Beach area and a perfect 15-0 against the Chants.
All 11 healthy players scored for Carolina, but Xylina McDaniel missed her second straight game with a sore hamstring. Waltiea Rolle returned to score four points in just nine minutes but was limited due to an ankle injury. Hillary Fuller also missed out with a lingering foot injury.
Carolina continues its annual pre-Christmas trip to the Grand Strand Wednesday when the Tar Heels face East Carolina at 7 p.m. at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center.