It took Joel Berry a little while to get going. Once he did, Davidson couldn’t stop the North Carolina star.
Berry’s 27 points led No. 13 UNC to a hard-fought 85-75 win over Davidson on Friday night at the Spectrum Center.
Berry didn’t score until there was 6:25 left in the first half, with junior forward Luke Maye doing most of the heavy lifting up to that point.
But Berry had 12 by the half and made four 3-pointers to give the Tar Heels (7-1) what they hope will be their first win in Charlotte this year.
The first two rounds of the NCAA tournament will be here in March and the Heels would love to start their road to a repeat here.
Maye, from nearby Huntersville, had a double-double by halftime and finished 24 points and a career-high 17 rebounds.
Davidson (3-3) made 7 of its first 13 3-pointers and led by as many as seven points early, but couldn’t sustain its pace.
The Wildcats finished 14 of 33 from the 3-point line, outscoring UNC 42 to 15, but UNC had a 53 to 22 rebounding advantage.
Joe Giglio: 919-829-8938, @jwgiglio