No. 6 North Carolina 118, Citadel 50
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) _ Sixth-ranked North Carolina recorded the school’s 35th 20-victory season Monday night as reserves Hubert Davis and Clifford Rozier scored 15 points apiece in the Tar Heels’ 118-50 whipping of The Citadel.
The Tar Heels also extended their streak of 20-win seasons to an NCAA- record 21. Coach Dean Smith’s teams haven’t done any worse than 20 victories since an 18-9 mark in the 1970-71 season. They’ve had 20 or more victories in 23 of the last 24 seasons.
North Carolina (20-4) tied Kentucky for the most 20-victory seasons and Monday night’s victory was No. 1,499, tops on the NCAA all-time list and one more than Kentucky. Kentucky has won 19 games this season.
The only similarity between North Carolina and The Citadel was the color of the uniforms. The Bulldogs, making their first visit to the Smith Center, were almost blown out of the building in the first four minutes.
North Carolina’s victory margin was the third-largest in school history and the 118 points was 11 shy of the record set in a 129-45 defeat of Manhattan in 1985.
The Citadel (5-20) is on a streak of its own - never having beaten North Carolina in 18 games, the last eight against Smith. The Bulldogs lost their fourth straight game and sixth in their last seven.
North Carolina scored the game’s first 14 points, while the Bulldogs were struggling with four turnovers, a blocked shot, one failed 3-pointer and a charging call. The Citadel’s first basket came at the 15:09 mark on Scott Van Schaardenburg’s 10-footer.
A second run of 21-2 over a five-minute stretch extended North Carolina’s lead to 51-17, Eric Montross ending it with a free throw with 3:40 left in the half.
When Kevin Salvadori’s basket put the Tar Heels over the century mark at 7:24, the lead was 100-37 and the less-than-capacity crowd headed for the exits. The only suspense left was whether Scott Cherry, the last North Carolina player on the bench, would score. He did, hitting two free throws with 2:55 left to stretch the Tar Heel advantage to 106-43.
Rick Fox scored 13 points and Montross and Brian Reese had 11 each for North Carolina.
Lamar Wright scored 14 and Terry Campbell 12 for The Citadel, which played suspended No. 2 scorer Aaron Nichols.