CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Dawson Garcia and Caleb Love each scored 22 points and North Carolina pulled away and posted an 80-63 win over Elon on Saturday.
The Tar Heels went to the free throw line 35 times, knocking down 27 (77%) to overcome a 23-for-53 (39%) shooting night from the field.
Elon got off to a strong start and Darius Burford’s dunk with 7:24 left in the first half pulled the Phoenix even at 24. North Carolina responded with a quick 7-0 run and closed the half with a 37-29 advantage. Armando Bacot hit two free throws, then followed them with a steal and dunk to spark a second-half run. Back-to-back 3-pointers by Love pushed the lead to 54-37 seven minutes into the second half.
Garcia hit 8 of 10 from the free throw line and grabbed seven rebounds for the Tar Heels (7-2). Love knocked down 4 of 7 from beyond the 3-point arc and collected three steals. R.J. Davis added 11 points.
North Carolina held a 43-28 advantage on the boards, pulling down 33 defensive rebounds and holding Elon (2-8) to just two offensive rebounds.
Hunter McIntosh paced Elon, hitting 4 of 9 from distance and finishing with 16 points. Darius Burford added 12 points and three assists. Elon shot 43% (25 of 58) from the field, but was just 5 of 9 from the free-throw line.
The loss was the seventh straight for the Phoenix.
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