December 17, 2005

Scrappy Broncos Fall At North Carolina

Dec. 17, 2005

Box Score |  Quotes |  Listen to postgame

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) - Tyler Hansbrough scored 14 points Saturday night to lead No. 19 North Carolina past Santa Clara 76-58, avenging the Broncos' stunning upset last season.

Reyshawn Terry scored eight of his 13 points during a key second-half run for the Tar Heels (6-1), who pulled away midway through the half in their first game after a 10-day exam break. Freshman Bobby Frasor also had 13 points to go with five rebounds and four assists.

Travis Niesen had 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Broncos (4-4).

In last year's meeting, Santa Clara led by as many as 19 points in the second half and got 26 points from Niesen in the 77-66 win, only the Tar Heels' fifth season-opening loss since 1930. The Tar Heels - who played without suspended point guard Raymond Felton - went on to win the national championship.

Not that last year's stunner really mattered to this year's Tar Heels, considering they lost their top seven scorers from the title team. Only four players from this year's group even played in that game, with David Noel and Quentin Thomas combining for six points.

Hansbrough and Frasor led the way this time, while fellow freshman Danny Green finished with 12 points. Noel added 11 and played shutdown defense on Niesen in the second half.

It was a tough day for Niesen, whether it was finding Noel in his face at every turn or getting booed by the crowd every time he touched the ball after throwing it off Noel while trying to save it in the first half. He scored 10 points on 5-for-9 shooting in the first half, but went 1-for-9 after the break.

He also picked up a technical foul midway through the second half after continuing to fight for a jump ball with Hansbrough after the whistle while the two were on the floor.

Behind Noel, the Tar Heels held the Broncos to four field goals over an 8-minute span and used a 25-9 run to take a 19-point lead. North Carolina also helped itself by getting to the foul line, shooting 16-for-24 in the second half and 20-for-28 in the game.

Leading 35-32 with 16:33 left, the Tar Heels started their run with a three-point play from Green. Terry hit a 3-pointer and two free throws to make it 52-37 and, after a three-point play by Frasor, Terry closed the run with another 3 for a 60-41 lead with 8:15 to play.

The Tar Heels maintained a double-digit the rest of the way, holding Santa Clara to 34 percent shooting for the game.