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Miami (Fla.) 87, North Carolina 61

The SportsXchange

CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Miami scored the first nine points of the game and didn't let up from there in dealing North Carolina an 87-61 defeat on Saturday to remain undefeated in Atlantic Coast Conference play.

The No. 8 Hurricanes (19-3, 10-0 in the ACC) ran their overall winning streak to 11 games and swept the season series from the Tar Heels for the first time since joining he ACC in the 2004-05 season.

The Hurricanes won the first meeting, 61-52, in Chapel Hill on Jan. 10.

The Tar Heels (16-7, 6-4) were going for their fourth straight victory and sixth win in seven outings since that loss, but instead suffered their worst defeat of the season, eclipsing a 24-point beating at Indiana.

North Carolina fell behind, 13-2, just over six minutes into the game and managed to cut that deficit to 22-15 at the 6:19 of the first half.

But the Hurricanes closed the out the half on a 22-12 run and continued to build on that lead in the second half, at one point leading by 28 points with 1:16 remaining.

The Hurricanes shot 53.4 percent from the field and put four players in double figures, topped by Shane Larkin's 18 points. Durand Scott and Kenny Kadji had 17 each and Rion Brown came off the bench to score 11.

Miami's defense held North Carolina to 38.5 percent shooting, the sixth time the Hurricanes have held a conference opponent to under 40 percent this season.

Reggie Bullock led the Tar Heels with 14 points.

NOTES: The 27 points North Carolina had at the half marked the third time in the last five games and the fifth time this season they have failed to break the 30-point mark in the first 20 minutes. The low output for the Tar Heels in the first half was 18 in an 82-71 loss to Butler on Nov. 20. ... On the other hand, the 44 points Miami scored were a season-high for the first half. The previous high was 42 in a victory over Duke. ... The loss to the Hurricanes was the first for the Tar Heels in Coral Gables under coach Roy Williams, who was 5-0 in the BankUnited Center coming into the game. ... Shane Larkin saw his streak of games with at least one steal end at 20 when he failed to come up with one against the Tar Heels.
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