North Carolina controls the glass, outlasts Syracuse for Williams’ 800th win
Seven Tar Heels scored and North Carolina beat Syracuse 85-68 in Chapel Hill on Monday night.
The victory was UNC’s 17th of the season and the 800th of head coach Roy Williams’ brilliant career.
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Isaiah Hicks led the Tar Heels in scoring with 20 points, his second consecutive game with 20 or more points. Justin Jackson added 19 points and 10 rebounds and Kennedy Meeks added 15 points and 12 rebounds, his seventh double-double of the season.
The game’s biggest story line was the inability of Syracuse to stop North Carolina in the post, where the Tar Heels had an 18-6 advantage on the offensive boards. Meeks led the way with six offensive rebounds and Justin Jackson had five.
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UNC passed the ball effectively, too, logging 22 assists to just 14 for the Orange. Theo Pinson led the Tar Heels with five assists followed by four each for Justin Jackson and Kenny Williams.
Syracuse’s Tyler Lydon led all scorers with 26 points on 11-of-14 shooting from the floor, including 3-of-5 from the three-point line.
The Tar Heels, now 17-3 on the season and 5-1 in ACC play, prepare to travel to Chestnut Hill for a game against Boston College on Saturday.
With the loss, Syracuse falls to 11-8 on the season and 3-3 in conference play, good for seventh place in the ACC.
With the win, Roy Williams picks up his 800th career victory, becoming the second-fastest coach in history to do so. Only Adolph Rupp got to 800 wins faster. Overall, Williams is 800-212 and has the second-highest win percentage among active coaches with at least five years’ experience.