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North Carolina bounces back with win over Wisconsin

Dec 1, 2011 - 7:00 AM Chapel Hill, NC (Sports Network) - Harrison Barnes scored a game-high 20 points to help No. 5 North Carolina take a 60-57 victory over ninth-ranked Wisconsin in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.

Tyler Zeller added 12 points and seven rebounds for the Tar Heels (6-1), who were coming off their first loss of the season, a 90-80 defeat by UNLV in the championship game of the Las Vegas Invitational.

Jordan Taylor paced Wisconsin (6-1) with 18 points and four assists, while Jared Berggren and Ryan Evans added 14 and 10 points, respectively.

"They're long and quick and getting good looks isn't the easiest thing in the world," Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan said of UNC.

With Wisconsin holding a 5-4 lead less than four minutes into the first half, North Carolina ripped off a 15-5 run as the Badgers struggled from the floor to take a 19-10 lead.

But the roles quickly reversed as Wisconsin scored 12 of the next 14 points to take a 22-21 lead on Rob Wilson's three-pointer with 2:23 left in the first half.

A couple of jumpers by John Henson and Barnes followed by a Taylor field goal gave the Tar Heels a 25-24 advantage at the break.

After Henson sank a shot to give the Tar Heels a three-point lead early in the second half, North Carolina would miss its next six attempts and Wisconsin capitalized to take a 32-29 edge.

Wisconsin's lead would stretch to as much as five, but Barnes' trey with 11:40 left sparked an 11-2 run in which he scored seven points to put the Tar Heels ahead, 42-38.

Wisconsin answered with a Frank Kaminsky three to bring the Badgers within one, but the Tar Heels scored the next seven points as their defense shut down the Badgers to jump out to a 49-41 advantage with 5:31 left in regulation.

"I think that they won it early in the game, but towards the second half we started pressing a little bit more. That kind of sped the pace up which was more our style," Barnes said.

Neither team would score again until Berggren dropped in a shot from beyond the arc with 2:59 left, but North Carolina quickly answered with a Reggie Bullock three-pointer and the Tar Heels made 6-of-8 free throws down the stretch to fend off the Badgers.

Game Notes

The Tar Heels stretched their win streak at home to 19 games...Wisconsin entered the game shooting 47 percent from three-point range, but made just 8- of-28 attempts (29 percent) against North Carolina...The Badgers have dropped nine straight road games against ranked opponents and head coach Bo Ryan fell to 36-41 overall against ranked teams...North Carolina has won both meetings between the teams.