It took Joel Berry a little while to get going. Once he did, Davidson couldn’t stop the North Carolina star.
Berry’s 27 points led No. 13 UNC to a hard-fought 85-75 win over Davidson on Friday night at the Spectrum Center.
Berry didn’t score until there was 6:25 left in the first half, with junior forward Luke Maye doing most of the heavy lifting up to that point.
But Berry had 12 by the half and made four 3-pointers to give the Tar Heels (7-1) what they hope will be their first win in Charlotte this year.
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The first two rounds of the NCAA tournament will be here in March and the Heels would love to start their road to a repeat here.
Maye, from nearby Huntersville, had a double-double by halftime and finished 24 points and a career-high 17 rebounds.
Davidson (3-3) made 7 of its first 13 3-pointers and led by as many as seven points early, but couldn’t sustain its pace.
The Wildcats finished 14 of 33 from the 3-point line, outscoring UNC 42 to 15, but UNC had a 53 to 22 rebounding advantage.
Joe Giglio: 919-829-8938, @jwgiglio