Dec 22, 2012; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels forward Brice Johnson (11) scores in the first half at the Dean E Smith Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

UNC Basketball: McNeese State Game Reaction

The Tar Heels squared off against McNeese State looking to rebound from an ugly performance against the Longhorns that cost them their third loss of the season.

Desmond Hubert returned to the starting lineup after a dreadful performance by Joel James in Texas. The intensity that was lacking for Carolina last time out was there from the opening tip early as UNC got off to a nice start on both ends of the court.

The Tar Heels played with better passion on the defensive end of the court getting a hand in their mans face, fighting through ball screens and communicating better than they have in the last few games.

UNC had a very well balanced first half offensively with the bench contributing just under half of their 54 first half points with 26 coming from the bench. Leslie McDonald led the way with 11 followed by PJ Hairston and Reggie Bullock with nine and James Michael McAdoo with eight.

The second half started with the Heels picking up right where they left off offensively but on several possessions seemed to let their guard down defensively. Jackson Simmons earned some significant playing time with the teams other centers leaving a lot to be desired in terms of getting the proper position and boxing out.

Hairston got it going in the second half hitting two straight threes after getting to the foul line and finding some offensive rhythm. If Hairston can establish something other than the deep shot I feel like his outside game will come, it’s when he forces everything from beyond the arc that things become a problem for him offensively.

The Heels did not allow it to become a major problem and did not allow a subpar team to comeback and make a game of it, finally!

The Tar Heels shot the ball much better from beyond the three point line and showed just how good they can be when their shots are going down from three point range.  They played closer to a 40 minute game tonight than they have in a while and gave us a game that we should be able to expect against a lesser opponent like McNeese State.

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