Coming into the Tar Heels' contest with Wake Forest, Sutton was averaging 8.3 points and 4.9 rebounds per game.
Sunday, the freshman traded stability for prominence.
Producing on both ends of the court, Sutton posted her first career double-double, tallying 18 points and 11 rebounds.
This game was Sutton's fifth straight in which she scored in double figures, and her 11 rebounds established a career high.
"Candace is playing with a lot of confidence," UNC coach Sylvia Hatchell said. "We haven't had a freshman step up that way since Marion Jones did."
Sutton not only stepped up her game, but did so at crucial junctures. Late in the game when WFU was closing in, Sutton's size and offensive prowess took over.
After Wake's Brenda Mock Kirkpatrick hit a jumper to close the score to 57-55 with 6:20 remaining, Sutton promptly nailed both free throws, spurring an 11-2 run that sealed the game for the Tar Heels.
The two free throws were part of a
4-of-7 performance from the line. From the field, Sutton hit on seven of 13 shots, scoring nine points in each half.
Sutton, while not making one of her own, contributed greatly to UNC's barrage of 3-pointers. The Tar Heels were 9-21 (42.9 percent) from behind the arc.
"When people have to move down and play her it opens up our other players," Hatchell said. "We'd draw in the defense and kick it out for that open shot."
The Deacons simply could not match up size-wise with the 6-foot-6 Sutton.
WFU's starting lineup had no one taller than 6-1, and Wake's two tallest bodies -- 6-4 LaTisha Pearson and 6-5 Johanna Bj
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