for this game

Freshmen lead North Carolina past Rutgers

Dec 29, 2006 - 4:49 AM CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina (Ticker) -- North Carolina's freshman class is so heralded, they are proving to be better than some Division I programs.

Brandan Wright scored 19 points and fellow freshman Wayne Ellington added 17 as No. 2 North Carolina cruised to an 87-48 victory over Rutgers.

Tyler Hansbrough had 13 points and freshman Ty Lawson added six along with a season-high nine assists for the Tar Heels (11-1), who have won eight straight games.

"Ty had nine assists and zero turnovers which is impressive," North Carolina coach Roy Williams said.

Wright, Ellington and Lawson are part of a highly-touted first-year class that is considered the cream of all incoming freshmen groups for 2006-07. They gave credence to that belief by combining to outscore Rutgers by seven points, as reserves Deon Thompson and Alex Stepheson added seven and six points, respectively.

"There was a lot of stuff to be happy about with the freshmen, and I congratulated them," Williams said.

Wright was 8-of-10 from the field and Ellington was 5-of-6 from 3-point range for the Tar Heels, who shot 55 percent (22-of-60) and are now 7-0 at home, outscoring their foes by more than 30 points in those contests.

"Ellington made three big 3's in a row in the first half, and Wright stepped up and was really impressive to say the least," Williams said.

Adrian Hill had 13 points and eight rebounds and Jaron Griffin scored 10 for the Scarlet Knights (6-6), who shot just 36 percent (21-of-58) and had just six assists compared to 27 for the Tar Heels.

"I thought we came out and executed our game plan in the first half about as well as you can," Rutgers coach Fred Hill said. "In the second half, they wore us down, sped the game up and trapped us. They have great depth."

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    RUTGERS 19 29 48
    NORTH CAROLINA (2) 33 54 87 FINAL

    Dec 28 8:50 PM

    RUTGERS 19

    Dec 28 7:45 PM