Final
  for this game

Top seed North Carolina draws Eastern Kentucky in first round

Mar 15, 2007 - 2:11 PM Eastern Kentucky (21-11) at North Carolina (28-6) 9:50 pm EDT

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina (Ticker) -- A very young North Carolina team earned the first seed in the NCAA Tournament East Region by beating North Carolina State in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament final.

The Tar Heels (28-6) will open tournament play down the road from their campus in Chapel Hill against 16th-seeded Eastern Kentucky, the Ohio Valley conference champion.

Starting three freshmen and a sophomore, North Carolina became the first team in ACC history to have three freshmen - Ty Lawson, Brandan Wright and Wayne Ellington - named to the all-tournament team.

Leading scorer and rebounder Tyler Hansbrough (18.8 ppg, 8.0 rpg) struggled playing with a mask on his face in the ACC tournament. The sophomore forward had his nose broken in the regular-season finale and likely will have to wear the mask throughout the Tar Heels' tournament run.

This is North Carolina's 39th NCAA Tournament appearance - tying UCLA for second all-time behind Kentucky (48) - and the 11th time it has been a top seed. The NCAA champions in 2005, the Tar Heels were stunned by George Mason in the second round last season.

North Carolina stumbled at the end of the regular season, dropping two of their last three contests, but rebounded with three straight wins in the conference tourney.

Eastern Kentucky is 0-6 all-time in the NCAAs, losing to Kentucky in the first round in 2005 in its last appearance. The Colonels (21-11) played well down the stretch, winning 11 of their last 13 games on the way to the OVC tournament championship. Sophomore Mike Rose, the OVC tournament MVP, is shooting 56.7 percent (17-of-30) from 3-point range over the last five games.

Eastern Kentucky and North Carolina have common opponents this season in Ohio State, Kentucky and UNC Asheville this season. While the Tar Heels won all three at home, the Colonels won at UNC Asheville and fell at Ohio State (74-45) and Kentucky (78-65).

This is Roy Williams' seventh No. 1 seed in 19 years as a head coach, and his second in four seasons with the Tar Heels.

The winner will face either eighth-seeded Marquette or ninth-seeded Michigan State in the second round.








  • EAST REGIONAL
    AT WINSTON-SALEM NC
    NCAA BB EAST REGIONAL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND TOTAL
    --- --- -----
    EASTRN KENTUCKY 35 30 65
    NORTH CAROLINA 47 39 86 FINAL

    Mar 15 11:58 PM


  • EAST REGIONAL
    AT WINSTON-SALEM NC
    NCAA BB (16) EASTRN KENTUCKY 35
    (1) NORTH CAROLINA 47 HALFTIME

    Mar 15 10:54 PM
  • DukeBlue Go Eastern Kentucky!!!!!!

    Eastern Kentucky vs. North CarolinaMar 15 12:58 PM