Carolina Takes Down Florida State, 79-58
by Aaron Beard, The Associated Press
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- James Michael McAdoo scored 17 of his 21 points in the first half and sparked the run that gave North Carolina a big lead on the way to beating Florida State 79-58 on Sunday.
Reggie Bullock added 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Tar Heels (21-8, 11-5 Atlantic Coast Conference), who won their fifth straight and continued their push for a first-round bye at the league tournament in Greensboro. North Carolina shot 58 percent in the opening half to build a 19-point lead at the break, then never let it slip below double figures.
McAdoo scored 11 during the 20-3 first-half run that blew the game open and helped the Tar Heels to a season sweep of the Seminoles (15-14, 7-9). UNC finished the game shooting 55 percent and scored 23 points off turnovers.
Michael Snaer scored 17 to lead Florida State, which has lost five of seven.
Tar Heels football coach Larry Fedora watched from the front row of the student risers behind the basket near the UNC bench. Fedora wore a blue visor with a wig of fake blue hair. His team opens spring practice Wednesday.
The Tar Heels have lost just once since coach Roy Williams went to a smaller lineup and shortened his rotation. It's been a big reason why they've regrouped from an 0-2 ACC start as well as a 26-point beating at Miami on Feb. 9. And that's put UNC in a race with Virginia and North Carolina State for the two remaining first-round byes at the ACC tournament behind Miami and Duke.
Trailing 16-15, UNC started its run with a basket from McAdoo followed by his dunk off a steal near midcourt for a three-point play. Then, after a 3-pointer from Bullock, McAdoo scored on three straight possessions - including when he dunked home a missed drive by Marcus Paige - before Bullock and P.J. Hairston closed the spurt with consecutive 3s to make it 35-19 with 3 1/2 minutes left before halftime.
In a sign of Florida State's struggles, the Seminoles even managed to leave McAdoo unguarded on the Tar Heels' final possession of the half. Paige raced upcourt and found McAdoo alone near the foul line for a layup that barely beat the halftime horn to give UNC a 46-27 lead.
The Seminoles showed no sign of being able to seriously cut into that deficit, either. They got as close as 12 on Ian Miller's 3-pointer at the 10:20 mark, but McAdoo answered with a tip-in of a missed free throw, then Hairston knocked down a jumper followed by another 3 to push the lead back up to 64-46 with about 8 minutes left.
Hairston finished with 16 points with four 3s, while the Seminoles shot 37 percent for the afternoon.
Florida State got some good news with the return of Terrance Shannon. The forward had been out since January when he was carried off the court with a neck injury suffered against Virginia. Coach Leonard Hamilton had said last month that the 6-foot-8 redshirt junior could miss the rest of the year, but he returned at the 8:35 mark of the opening half after missing 11 straight games. He finished with two points in 3 minutes.
North Carolina played without freshman guard J.P. Tokoto, who didn't dress out after bruising his right hand in Saturday's practice.