Cole Anthony made history in his college basketball debut and looks to follow that up with another strong effort on the road when 11th-ranked North Carolina visits UNC Wilmington on Friday night. The son of former UNLV and NBA standout Greg Anthony broke both the school and ACC records for points in a career debut with 34 while adding 11 rebounds and five assists in the Tar Heels' 76-65 victory over Notre Dame on Wednesday.
"It's cool, I'm going to - not celebrate, but be happy about it a little bit tonight, give myself a little pat on the back," Anthony told reporters after topping the school record of 28 set by Rashad McCants in 2002 and the ACC mark Duke's RJ Barrett (33) broke last season. "But we've got practice (Thursday). We've got to lock back in. We've got a game on Friday." North Carolina coach Roy Williams said after the game that Anthony's toughness was something he has appreciated since the first time he saw him as a high school freshman and the 6-3 guard showed that by playing all 20 minutes in the second half of the opener. "That dude is pretty good, isn't he? Just unbelievable," Tar Heels' junior guard Andrew Platek told reporters of Anthony. "I've been telling everyone that will listen, he's the best point guard in the country. ... He's going to show that every single game." Anthony's next test will be against the Seahawks, who defeated Johnson & Wales (Charlotte) 103-83 on Tuesday in their opener as they drained 11 shots from 3-point range and had five players score in double figures.
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ABOUT NORTH CAROLINA (1-0): Anthony connected on 12-of-24 from the field - 6-of-11 from 3-point range - in 37 minutes and may be asked to play substantial time again with senior guard Brandon Robinson questionable due to an ankle injury. Junior forward Garrison Brooks was the only other player scoring in double figures Wednesday with 10, adding nine rebounds and three blocks, while freshman big man Armando Bacot scored seven and grabbed eight boards. Guard Christian Keeling, a transfer from Charleston Southern where he averaged 18.7 points last season, had five points and five turnovers in his debut.
ABOUT UNC WILMINGTON (1-0): Sophomore guard Jaylen Sims led the way with a career-high 19 points in the opener and added three steals while junior guard Jay Estime' scored 13 and hauled in six rebounds. Freshman guard Jake Boggs poured in 13 points in his career debut and senior guard Carter Skaggs, a graduate transfer from Washington State where he averaged six points last season, scored 11 and grabbed eight rebounds. Freshman Shykeim Phillips also reached double figures in his debut with 11 points, while Florida transfer Mike Okauru scored nine and 6-8 Valparaiso transfer Marten Linssen added eight points.
1. Platek scored eight points off the bench, draining both of his 3-point attempts, in Wednesday's opener.
2. Seahawks sophomore G Kai Toews was second in the nation last season with 7.7 assists per game and had three on Tuesday.
3. North Carolina sophomore G Leaky Black filled the stat sheet with five points, seven rebounds and five assists in 33 minutes against Notre Dame.
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Wilmington, North Carolina, USA.