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The Daily Tar Heel

Garrison Brooks' 20 points lead the way for UNC in 76-67 win over Alabama

UNC's junior forward Garrison Brooks (15) dunks the ball during a game against Gardner-Webb on Friday, Nov. 15, 2019.

The No. 6 North Carolina men's basketball team (5-0) knocked off Alabama (2-3) in its first game of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament in the Bahamas on Wednesday, 76-67. Junior forward Garrison Brooks had a team-high 20 points and seven rebounds, while first-year guard Cole Anthony added 13 points.

What happened?

UNC nursed a slight lead for most of the first half behind Brooks' 16 points before the break, just four off of his career high. Anthony, meanwhile, had four points on four shots at halftime to go along with three assists and three turnovers. 

Guard John Petty Jr. kept the Crimson Tide alive with five three-pointers early on, putting the UNC lead at 37-31 going into the second half. It wasn't until then that the Tar Heels found their groove.

At the 16:59 mark, first-year forward Armando Bacot got a breakaway dunk to punctuate a quick 6-0 spurt and put North Carolina up 43-34. Later, a pair of layups from guard Leaky Black stretched the UNC lead to 15.

From there, the two teams traded baskets until a layup cut the lead to nine with 6:20 to go. The Tar Heels responded with six straight points, all from either Brooks or Bacot, to help salt the game away and allow North Carolina to advance in the early-season tournament.

Who stood out?

Brooks' 20 points on 7-13 shooting matched a career high, while Bacot posted another double-double with 12 points and 15 rebounds for UNC. Anthony struggled from the floor – he missed nine of 13 shots – but had seven rebounds and six assists in 32 minutes.

Petty lit it up for the Tide and finished with 23 points on seven made three-pointers.

When was it decided?

The North Carolina lead was cut to nine with 1:33 to play, but the Tar Heels got the stops they needed and only allowed one more Tide bucket to earn the win.

Why does it matter?

The game was the first of the season for Brandon Robinson, who missed the start of the season with an ankle injury. Against the Tide, the senior guard posted 12 points on 3-6 shooting from deep.

The biggest concern for UNC this season has been the lack of a consistent scorer behind Anthony. A strong showing from Robinson could mean that he's the guy to fill that void for Roy Williams' squad.

When do they play next?

The Tar Heels will play their next game of the tournament on Thursday against a 5-0 Michigan team at 1:30 p.m.


@DTHSports |

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