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The Daily Tar Heel

Hoosiers Extend Tar Heels' Slide

North Carolina struggled to find scoring outside of Kris Lang and is 0-3 for the first time since 1928.

Instead, the monkey remained on winless UNC's back as Indiana downed North Carolina 79-66 Wednesday night at the Smith Center.

"A lot of our kids grew up tonight," said UNC coach Matt Doherty. "Kris Lang grew up tonight. He's a senior, but he really took it on his shoulders."

Still, the Tar Heels dropped to 0-3 on the season as well as in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, while the Hoosiers (4-1) won their debut in the event. The ACC took this year's trophy by winning five of the matchups.

North Carolina lost its opening three contests for the first time since 1928 and dropped its first three at home for the first time in Tar Heel men's basketball history.

Indiana opted to play man-to-man most of the game against UNC despite the early season success of zones against the Tar Heels. The result was that Lang got plenty of touches inside, but his teammates couldn't provide enough help.

Lang finished with a game-high 27 points on 11-for-16 shooting. He netted 18 of those points in a first half in which no other Tar Heel managed to make more than one field goal.

"I expect (to get that many shots) when a team plays man," said Lang, who also had eight rebounds and four blocks. "Senior leaders are supposed to do that."

Fellow senior Jason Capel added 16 points, most of which came late in the game and from the free-throw line. He made good on four of his 15 shots, grabbed nine boards and turned the ball over seven times.

UNC committed 18 turnovers and had another poor-shooting night at 36.7 percent. Junior forward Will Johnson provided some offensive spark, hitting all three of his 3-point attempts for nine points. Freshman guard Jackie Manuel got his second straight start and scored eight.

"I think the young guys grew up," Capel said.

The Tar Heels threw the zone they had seen previously this season at the Hoosiers, but Indiana didn't have the same shooting woes UNC has had.

Led by A.J. Moye and Tom Coverdale, Indiana nailed 9 of 17 first-half 3s for a 40-30 advantage at intermission. The duo drained seven of those long rangers. Moye finished with 20 points.

"They hit a lot of tough shots, shots with hands in their faces and falling away," Capel said. "They made a lot of tough shots in the first half -- really tough shots."

Despite being winless, Doherty didn't find this loss as tough a pill to swallow.

"I'm excited about this team," Doherty said. "It may sound sick to you guys because we're 0-3, but we have some guys in that locker room who busted their tails."

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

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