The Daily Tar Heel

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Sunday September 26th

Lewis' Triple-Double Crushes UNC's Hopes to Win

The second half of Wednesday's game?

Not so much.

The Wolfpack rattled off a 14-3 run early in the second half, breaking open a tight game and beating the Tar Heels 84-73.

State's senior guard Tynesha Lewis torched UNC (14-12, 7-8 in the ACC)for 20 points in the second half of Senior Night at Reynolds Coliseum, and she recorded just the second triple-double (10 rebounds, 10 assists) in school history -- in either men's or women's basketball.

She recorded the first on Jan. 29.

"We obviously couldn't do anything about Tynesha Lewis," UNC coach Sylvia Hatchell said. "No one could guard her. She did a good job setting the tempo, and she took charge. The whole team fed off of her."

The majority of Lewis' second-half points came on her penetration through North Carolina's timid defense.

The Tar Heels got in foul trouble early and often. Center Candace Sutton was whistled for two quick ones less than four minutes into the first half and spent the rest of the half on the end of the UNC bench. Her replacement, Chrystal Baptist, picked up three fouls in a three-minute span that ended with still 13:00 left in the stanza.

The end result was a Tar Heel defense that shied away from contact in the lost post for much of the game.

The 'Pack (18-8, 9-6) saw enough open looks to hit 64.5 percent of their shots in the second half, 51.6 for the game.

"They just beat us to the spots," Hatchell said. "They made inside cuts, even without our size. They just got around us and got shots."

But give Lewis credit for much of State's offensive success. She hit 10-of-21 from the floor (47.6 percent) and got the ball often to forward Carisse Moody, who also put up 15 points in just 23 minutes on the floor.

Lewis, to put it mildly, was feeling it.

"I looked over to the bench in the first half, and I had a big smile on my face," Lewis said. "I was just feeling great. It was a level of confidence, feeling comfortable about our game."

After the Wolfpack's 14-3 run gave State a 49-38 lead, the Tar Heels were only able to trim their deficit to under 10 points five times. But the closest UNC was able to get those five times was nine points.

Part of UNC's problem was finding the basket. LaQuanda Barksdale scored 18 points, but on 6-of-16 shooting. The Tar Heels' top three scorers -- Barksdale, Juana Brown and Coretta Brown -- combined for 15-of-47 from the field (31.9 percent).

"It was just constant focus on what we had to do tonight," Wolfpack coach Kay Yow said. "We've worked very hard on our defense, and we didn't let up. We stayed focused and that helped us out tonight.

The first half was a nip-and-tuck affair that looked a lot like last month's game and featured two ties and six lead changes.

The Wolfpack scored 14 of the the game's first 22 points, but then the Tar Heels went on a 16-0 run to grab a six-point lead. State responded with a 12-2 run of its own and led by four at the break.

Then Lewis took over.

"We were thinking about the last game, and we didn't like that we lost," Lewis said. "We took that personally."

The Sports Editor can be reached at sports@unc.edu.

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