CHAPEL HILL – Preseason first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference guard Joel Berry II scored 20 points to lead six Tar Heels in double figures as sixth-ranked North Carolina defeated UNC Pembroke, 124-63, in a men’s college basketball exhibition game Friday evening at the Dean E. Smith Center.
The Tar Heels shot 71.9 percent from the floor in the first half to build a 61-30 lead at intermission. Isaiah Hicks (12), Berry (11) and Kenny Williams (10) combined for 33 points in the opening 20 minutes to out-score the Braves. Luke Maye added eight points, five rebounds and two assists in the first half and finished with 15 points, eight boards, five assists and two steals.
Carolina made 23 of 32 shots from the floor in the first half, converted 19 of its first 27 attempts in the second period, and finished at 65.7 percent for the game.
UNC Pembroke made 25 of 95 field goals for the game, a percentage of .263, and was 8 for 35 from three-point range (.265). The Braves grabbed 30 offensive rebounds, which is the most against any Roy Williams-coached UNC team. UNCP converted those 30 offensive rebounds into only 14 second-chance points, one point more than the Tar Heels had on just 11 offensive rebounds.
Carolina also converted 50 percent from three-point range as the Tar Heels knocked down 10 of 20 from beyond the arc. Berry was 3 for 3, and Jackson and Kenny Williams each made two three-pointers.
Nigel Grant and Andrew Evans led UNCP with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Grant had a team-high seven rebounds. Micah Kinsey grabbed a game-high six offensive rebounds.
Freshman Tony Bradley and Maye led the Tar Heels with eight rebounds apiece, and Bradley had a game-high four blocked shots.
The Tar Heels open regular-season play a week from tonight (Nov. 11) in New Orleans against Tulane. UNC returns to the Smith Center for the home opener on Sunday, November 13, at 4 p.m. against Chattanooga (note the time for that game has changed since the ACC initially announced the schedule).