The No. 17 UNC women’s basketball team (4-0, 0-0 ACC) defeated Elon (1-3, 0-0 CAA), 68-39, on Saturday afternoon at Carmichael Arena.
The Tar Heels finished out their four game season-opening homestand undefeated, with this victory being their third game in just seven days.
The game was sloppy early on, with UNC conceding two turnovers in the game’s first two minutes. Senior forward Alyssa Ustby then took control early, trekking the length of the floor twice for coast-to-coast-buckets.
“For me, everything starts on defense,” Utsby said. “My activity, personally, along with our collective five people on the defensive end. That’s really where I get my offensive drive from.”
A 3-pointer from sophomore guard Kayla McPherson and a jumper from senior guard Deja Kelly prompted an Elon timeout and bring the Tar Heels to 18 points.
Phoenix forward Ajia James hit a three-pointer to beat the first quarter buzzer, bringing the score to 18-15, UNC. The turnover trends continued in the second quarter, including an Elon 10-second violation. The teams combined for 18 first half turnovers.
Elon was able to attack the basket with ease, taking advantage of mismatches and connecting on interior shots, shooting 9-15 from inside the arc in the first half. After subbing back in, Ustby made an immediate impact, scoring a putback layup to extend the Tar Heel lead to 26-19 midway through the second quarter.
A 3-pointer from graduate guard Lexi Donarski in the half’s final seconds gave the Tar Heels a 36-23 heading into halftime.
Ustby led the way in the first half with 10 points and five rebounds. Kelly added 10 points, while playing the entire first half.