CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- North Carolina is now above .500 in ACC play (3-2) for the first time this season. Georgia Tech (0-5) is still searching for its first conference win.
A quick look at the Tar Heels’ 79-63 victory at the Smith Center on Wednesday night:
Turning point: The Tar Heels led by as many as 13 points in the first half, but the Yellow Jackets cut their deficit to four in the moments before halftime, thanks to strong rebounding that helped cut down on UNC’s fast-break and second-chance opportunities. But after Tech missed on its opportunity to cut the lead to two, junior Reggie Bullock and freshman J.P. Tokoto scored buckets (both on assists from freshman forward Brice Johnson) to give UNC a 40-32 cushion at the break.
Energetic UNC then opened the second half with a 9-2 run -- including five points from Bullock -- to take its largest lead to that point in the game. The Jackets never really threatened again.
Kammeon Holsey, a starter last season who has adapted well to his sixth-man role, finished with 18 points for Georgia Tech.
Noteworthy number: Tech outrebounded UNC 50-45, but shot only 36 percent for the game.
Etc.: UNC reserve Leslie McDonald, who had missed three previous games because of a sore right knee, remained dressed in a suit on the bench. The school announced earlier Wednesday that the redshirt junior is suspended for three more games because, coach Roy Williams said, he “did not do what we expect of our student-athletes.”
Next up: Georgia Tech plays Wake Forest at home on Saturday; UNC plays at No. 18 NC State the same day.