December 19, 2019 / 4:24 AM / a month ago

No. 2 Gonzaga stays hot at home, upends North Carolina

EditorsNote: adds “home” in second graf

Dec 18, 2019; Spokane, WA, USA; Gonzaga Bulldogs students line up for the men’s basketball game against the North Carolina Tar Heels at McCarthey Athletic Center. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Corey Kispert scored a game-high 26 points, two shy of his career high, as No. 2 Gonzaga defeated North Carolina 94-81 on Wednesday night in Spokane, Wash.

Filip Petrusev added 20 points for the Bulldogs (12-1), who won their 29th straight game at the McCarthey Athletic Center, the longest home streak in NCAA Division I.

The Bulldogs shot 59.3 percent from the field (35 of 59) while limiting the Tar Heels to 45.6 percent (31 of 68). Kispert, a junior forward, was 10 of 12, including 5 of 6 from 3-point range.

Garrison Brooks scored 16 points for the Tar Heels (6-5), who have suffered four consecutive defeats for the first time since 2010. Christian Keeling added 12 points, and Jeremiah Francis scored 11.

North Carolina played without standout point guard Cole Anthony, who was averaging 19.1 points, second among freshmen nationally, plus 6.3 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game. Anthony underwent arthroscopic surgery for a torn meniscus in his right knee Monday and is expected to be out four to six weeks.

Gonzaga had a balanced attack, with six of the seven players coach Mark Few used scoring nine or more points.

Joel Ayayi had 11 points, a game-high 10 rebounds and six assists, Ryan Woolridge added 11 points and nine assists, and Admon Gilder also scored 11.

Gonzaga forward Killian Tillie, the only remaining player on either team from the 2017 NCAA Tournament championship game, which the Tar Heels won 71-65 by closing with an 8-0 run, was limited to 15 minutes because of foul trouble. Tillie finished with nine points.

Kispert scored 16 points in the first half as the Bulldogs took a 44-37 halftime lead. Gonzaga led by as many as 14 points, 41-27 with 3:38 left in the half, before North Carolina closed with a 10-3 run to halve its deficit. Brooks scored 11 in the first half for the Tar Heels.

The Bulldogs pulled away early in the second half and led by as many as 23 points, 87-64, with 4:39 remaining.

—Field Level Media

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