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Hurricanes Breeze By Tar Heels, 61-37

Feb. 8, 2012

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CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) – Shenise Johnson and Riquna Williams helped Miami avenge its lone ACC loss.

Johnson scored 19 points and Williams added 17 to lead No. 6 Miami to a 61-37 win over No. 22 North Carolina. The Tar Heels beat the Hurricanes 65-63 in Chapel Hill on Jan. 2.

“We felt like we lost it (the last time) and something we could change,” Johnson said. “We wanted to make sure we came out and played Miami basketball, and do what we do well for 40 minutes. We didn’t do that up in Carolina.”

Miami (21-3, 10-1 ACC) forced North Carolina (17-7, 7-4) into a season-high 35 turnovers and scored 39 points off turnovers.

“They’ve got great guards,” North Carolina coach Sylvia Hatchell said. “They come at you, are extremely physical. That was basically the bottom-line.”

Stefanie Yderstrom chipped in 10 points and had seven steals for the Hurricanes, who won their 38th straight home game.

The 38-game home streak is the third-longest active streak in the nation. Only Connecticut (98) and Stanford (74) have longer streaks.

North Carolina did not have a player score in double figures as Laura Bloomfield led the Tar Heels with seven points and six rebounds.

Miami did not have a great shooting night at 37.3 percent (22 of 59) from the floor and had 23 turnovers of their own, but they still outshot North Carolina, which was held to 26.8 percent (15 of 56).

“It’s never going to always be pretty in February, but gritty is better than pretty right now,” Miami coach Katie Meier said.

After North Carolina scored the game’s first four points, the Hurricanes went on a 17-0 run sparked by three 3-pointers by Williams. Johnson and Shawnice Wilson each scored four during the run. During the pivotal run, the Tar Heels missed nine consecutive shots and had seven turnovers.

“I’ve got great upperclassmen,” Meier said. “What I love about them is they have that wisdom, besides the talent and capability, that they know how we’re going to get this team and when our moment is going to come.”

Waltiea Rolle ended the six-minute scoring drought for the Tar Heels with a basket.

However, Miami maintained a steady lead throughout the half, but it was cut to 27-20 after a jumper by Tierra Ruffin-Pratt. However, Miami countered with a pair of field goals including a 3-pointer by Yderstrom from the right wing.

“We didn’t play particularly well at North Carolina,” Meier said. “We were in control of the game and then they took the lead with a minute to go. That was something that we never do, so we weren’t going to let the lead dwindle and I thought we responded at huge times.”

Miami led 32-22 at the break.

Yderstrom connected again from long range early in the second half forcing North Carolina to take a timeout down by 15 points.

The Hurricanes led by double digits the rest of the way.

POST-GAME NOTES

MOVING UP THE RANKS
With four three-pointers on Wednesday night against North Carolina, Riquna Williams grabbed sole possession of sixth place in Atlantic Coast Conference history with 256 career treys. She is only 11 longballs away from fifth place all-time (Cotelia Bond-Young, Wake Forest).

NECK AND NECK
Williams and junior guard Stefanie Yderstrom are in a tight battle for the conference lead in three-point field goals made in 2011-12. With two against UNC, Yderstrom now leads the conference with 53. Williams isn’t far behind in second place, however, with 51 of her own after making four more on Wednesday.

  1st 2nd F
North Carolina 22 15 37
Miami 32 29 61
Team Stat Comparison
  UNC UM
Points 37 61
FG Made-Attempted 15-56 22-59
FG Percentage 26.8 42.1
3P Made-Attempted 2-8 8-19
3P Percentage 25.0 42.1
FT Made-Attempted 5-9 9-15
FT Percentage 55.6 60.0
Rebounds 46 39
Assists 9 12
Turnovers 35 23
North Carolina Stat Leaders Miami
Broomfield 7 Points 19 Johnson
Butts 8 Rebounds 9 Bullock
Rountree 3 Assists 5 Bullock
Butts 4 Steals 7 Yderstrom
Shegog 3 Blocks 3 Bullock

THOU SHALL STEAL
Yderstrom broke her personal record with her fifth steal of the night early in the second half. She finished with seven steals on the night, besting her previous high of four thefts most recently against VCU in Dec. 2011.

ERROR TERROR
The previous North Carolina high for turnovers in a game this season was 31, which happened against the Canes last time out on Jan. 2. They eclipsed that total on Wednesday, turning the ball over 35 times against an impressive Miami defense.

DEFENSIVE HISTORY
The Canes, who forced 35 turnovers  from UNC along with sub-30% shooting, also held the Tar Heels to their lowest scoring output in conference history at 37 points.