No. 7 N. Carolina tops Kennesaw St 89-44

Dec 29, 2009 - 10:33 PM CHAPEL HILL, N.C.(AP)Italee Lucas, Waltiea Rolle and the rest of their North Carolina teammates are happy to be back home at Carmichael Auditorium. It showed, too.

Lucas scored 16 points and Rolle added 14 as the seventh-ranked Tar Heels (10-1) cruised to an 89-44 win over Kennesaw State on Tuesday. It was their first game back at renovated Carmichael since the end of the 2007-08 season.

"We wanted to have a few games in here before we started ACC play and this is a good way to get going," Tar Heels coach Sylvia Hatchell said. "Waltiea Rolle continues to get better she had a perfect (shooting) game today. She'la (White) played well. She had nine assists and her defense made a difference ... and Italee had another good game as far as being our leading scorer today."

North Carolina had played its previous 26 home games at the Smith Center, home of the Tar Heels men's team.

Trinity Bursey added 11 points and Cierra Robertson-Warren 10 for North Carolina.

Tamasha Bolden paced the Owls (4-7) with 12 points and Gia Lockett added 11.

The Tar Heels, who outrebounded the Owls 60-28, led 45-21 at halftime.

"Coach gave us a tour about two days ago of the entire building, and a lot of us were just speechless," Lucas said. "It's just amazing. We're very fortunate to be able to play in a building like this. I've seen coach's office. I'm moving in."

Kennesaw State coach Colby Tilley had a feeling what to expect.

"I told our players `You'll always be a footnote in the media guide. They played their first game in Carmichael against Kennesaw State,"' Tilley said. "I just didn't tell them what the score was going to be.

"We know coming in what it's all about. We don't have any expectations of pulling the upset or being close. It just gives our kids who dream of playing somewhere like North Carolina the ability to play against North Carolina and to see what it really is like."

UNC center Chay Shegog suffered a concussion in the first half and did not return. Kennesaw State guard DeAndrea Bullock injured her ankle four minutes into the game and did not return.

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