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Off the cuff: Wow, just, wow. I know Brice Johnson's buckets weren't 20 footers or anything and, yes, he had some garbage baskets. But he put himself in the right spot and was aggressive getting there. They were fouling him but keep in mind that he hit only 11 of 16 free throws. He could have had 44 points.

It was the first game that a college player has scored more than 35 points and gotten more than 20 points since Kevin Durant did it for Texas during the 2006-07 season.

It overshadowed Marcus Paige a bit as he scored a season-high 30 points.

Only four Tar Heels played over 20 minutes in the game as Carolina committed 28 fouls with Pinson, Hicks and Berry collecting four each.


Tar Heels 106, Florida St. 90
Johnson, Paige combine for 69 in win

Brice Johnson had one of the best scoring and rebounding nights in North Carolina history with 39 points and 23 rebounds as the Tar Heels whipped Florida State 106-90 in an away ACC game. (1/4)

It's been more than 50 years since a Tar Heel player had a double-double of that magnitude when Billy Cunningham had two similar games - scoring 48 points and getting 25 rebounds in one game and 40 points and 28 rebounds in another in 1964.

"That's about as good as I've ever seen, especially on the road," UNC coach Roy Williams said of Johnson's performance. He likened it to 20-20 games by Nick Collison, when he coached Kansas, and Sean May, since he's been with Carolina.

Johnson's fellow senior Marcus Paige scored a season-high 30 points as Carolina scored 51 points in the last 14 minutes to erase a 56-55 deficit. Up just 72-70 midway through the second half, the Tar Heels went on a 14-4 run to take a commanding lead at 86-74 with 7:40 left.

It never got closer than seven the rest of the way with the final score being the largest lead as the Tar Heels scored the last nine points of the game.

Florida State trailed just 41-37 at the half and stayed close until the last 10 minutes due mainly to the Seminoles' three-point scoring. While they hit only 41 percent of their field goals, the Noles hit 10 of 20 three-pointers with Xavier Rathan-Mayes getting seven of them.

Meanwhile, Carolina hit 50 percent of its field goals as Joel Berry was the only other Tar Heel in double figures with 12. Berry hit a three with 1:42 to give Carolina a 100-90 lead and stop any thoughts of a comeback. The Heels needed big games by Johnson and Paige as Berry, Theo Pinson and Isaiah Hicks were all saddled with four fouls.

"We played great down the stretch with a lot of poise," said Johnson, who was modest about his scoring. "The guys would dump it off to me and I was at the right place at the right time."

A lot of Johnson's points came within a couple of feet of the basket but a lot of times he was rebounding and following up missed shots. He had seven offensive rebounds, with most of those turning into points.

Carolina did turn the ball over 16 times but in a high-paced game like that, the pressure defense also opened the floor for Tar Heel drives to basket. As Coach Williams said, if the Heels missed it, Johnson was right there to get the rebound and score.

Florida State falls to 10-4 and 0-2 in the ACC while North Carolina improves to 14-2 and 3-0 in the ACC.

The Tar Heels travel to Syracuse Saturday.


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