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Off the cuff: Does it strike you as presumptuous and strange that TV has "the Food Lion starting five?" Funny, I didn't know Lawson, Ginyard, Ellington, Hansbrough and Thompson played for Food Lion. I expected them to introduce Tom E. Smith.

I'm not real fond of the atmosphere at Miami. It still doesn't seem like they are part of the ACC and they seem to have more of an NBA feel. The announcer even gives the score after made baskets. Is that really needed?

Will Graves got into the game for three minutes and I don't even remember it. I saw him yawning at one point - and that was in the first half.

Danny Green had gone 0 for 8 from three-point land over the last three games before he drilled a three in the first half. Later in the half, he had a steal that led to an Ellington dunk but other than those two things, he was a non-factor. He seemed a step slow on defense too. Super sub Green is a key to this team.

While Miami shot nearly 50 percent, the Heels actually played some good defense, especially in the rebounding department. As Coach Williams pointed out, if it weren't for their offensive and defensive rebounds in the first half, the Heels would have trailed at the half.

Pet peeves: Two more Duke-inspired air ball calls by Woody Durham and players and coaches shaking hands with 22 seconds still left on the clock.

Heels 98, Hurricanes 82
Hansbrough punches the eye of the Hurricane

Tyler Hansbrough almost singled-handedly opened up a fairly close game in the second half with an overpowering performance to lead UNC to a 98-82 drubbing at Miami. (1/23)

Hansbrough, who had only two field goals in the first half, scored 27 points in the second half to finish with 35 points including 15 of 16 from the free throw line. The points were the second most of his career and the most in a game this year. The 15 free throws were a career high for him.

Hansbrough scored six points, including a 10-footer and a 12-footer, before the first TV timeout of the second half to give the Heels their first double-digit lead of the game at 59-48.

Long three-pointers by Lance Hurdle, who finished with a career-high 20 points, kept Miami in the game as the Hurricanes trimmed the lead to seven on two occasions in the second half. But Hansbrough was too tough inside and when Marcus Ginyard sank a rushed three-pointer at the end of a shot clock to make it 81-65 midway through the second half, the outcome seemed inevitable.

The lead got as high as 18. In the first half, the Tar Heels ran out to an 18-10 lead after a Danny Green three-point shot but they went five minutes without points and seven minutes without a field goal. During that time Miami took a 23-20 lead.

Carolina took the lead at 29-27 on a Deon Thompson rebound and follow shot and upped the lead to five at 32-27 on a Wayne Ellington old-fashioned three-point play on a short jumper.

The largest lead since 18-10 came at the very end of the half. Miami missed a three-pointer that would have cut the lead to one with seven seconds to go. Ty Lawson raced down the court and lobbed up a high-arching layup while being fouled. With 1.7 seconds left, Lawson sank the free throw to send the Heels up 47-40 at the break.

Hansbrough's tough play may have somewhat overshadowed him a bit but Lawson had a more than solid game as he scored 23 points, dished out 10 assists and turned the ball over only once. Several times he put the Hurricanes on their heels after made baskets, keeping them off balance with quick drives to the hoop.

Ellington finished with 12 points while Thompson, who got into a little foul trouble early in the second half, scored 10.

The win improved Carolina to 19-1 and 4-1 in conference play while Miami fell to 14-4 and 1-3 in the ACC.

The Tar Heels go eight days without playing - a strange break during conference play.

Check out the game box score and a game photo gallery.
Take a look at other game articles.
Read my Tar Heels' season preview on WRAL.com by clicking here.

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