Hansbrough, Heels open league slate Sunday

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 2, 2009

By Scott Sonner
Associated PressRENO, Nev. ó Tyler Hansbrough missed the only shot he took in the first eight minutes against Nevada, but he took over after that to help keep top-ranked North Carolina undefeated.
Hansbrough finished with 22 points as the Tar Heels dispatched of the Wolf Pack 84-61 ó their school-record 13th straight win by double figures.
“I was just waiting for the game to come to me,” said Hansbrough said. “I wasn’t rushing. I wasn’t trying to force anything.”
UNC coach Roy Williams said he was disappointed with his team’s defensive play at times, especially fouls that allowed Nevada to make 16 of 24 free throws.
“Letting them shoot 20 free throws in the second half is not what we want to do,” Williams said. “You’ve got to win some games like this that are a little uglier than you like, but we’ve got a pretty doggone good basketball team that took a good shot from a good team and still got a win,” Williams said.
No opponent has come closer than 15 points against these Tar Heels, who entered Wednesday averaging 95.8 points and winning by 26.8. They are riding a 39-game regular season winning streak against non-conference foes and open play in the ACC at home Sunday against Boston College.
“We’ve had some tough games, and we’ve had some tough opponents,” UNC guard Wayne Ellington said. “We’re definitely looking forward to our league starting. I think we’re well-prepared.”