Tar Heels, Wolfpack sail into second round of Big Dance

The Palmetto State doesn’t have a dog in the NCAA Tournament fight this year, but two teams from the Tar Heel State are moving on to the second round following their wins on Friday.

One day after UNC Asheville and Davidson went down in the first round, North Carolina and N.C. State gave Carolinians something to cheer about in the Big Dance.

Top-seeded Tar Heels scored a 77-58 victory over Vermont in Greensboro, while the 11th-seeded Wolfpack upset No. 6-seeded San Diego State 79-65 on Friday. Duke faced Lehigh on Friday night.

North Carolina’s Tyler Zeller and Kendall Marshall each had a double-double to lead the Tar Heels to their 30th victory.

Zeller, the ACC player of the year, scored 17 points and grabbed 15 rebounds with four blocks and Marshall had 11 points and 10 assists. But the breakout star may have been James Michael McAdoo, who had a career-high 17 points, six rebounds and four steals while playing in place of the injured John Henson (wrist). Harrison Barnes added 14 points and six rebounds.

Vermont (24-12) was led by Sando Carissimo with 11 points and Matt Glass with 10 points. Four McGlynn, the team’s leading scorer during the season, was held to six points on 2-of-13 shooting.

The Tar Heels never trailed in the game and led 37-25 at halftime. North Carolina (30-5) advances to play No. 20 Creighton in the next round of the Midwest Region on Sunday in Greensboro, N.C.

N.C. State’s Richard Howell scored 15 of his 22 points in the first half and North Carolina State dominated in the paint against the undersized Aztecs in the NCAA tournament’s Round of 64 in Columbus, Ohio.

Lorenzo Brown had 17 points and C.J. Leslie added 15 for No. 11 seed North Carolina State (23-12), which advances to play either third-seeded Georgetown or 14th-seeded Belmont on Sunday.

Jamaal Franklin scored 23 points, including four 3-pointers, for sixth-seeded San Diego State (26-8), which was outrebounded 30-25. Franklin, Chase Tapley (19) and James Rahon (11) combined to score 53 of San Diego State’s 65 total points.

Leading by four at halftime, North Carolina State extended its lead to 10 with 5:33 to play after scoring six straight. The Wolfpack shot 57.4 percent (31 of 54) from the field while holding San Diego State to 37.7 percent.

Howell picked up his fourth foul with 9:45 to go, and the Aztecs responded with a brief run before North Carolina State regained control down the stretch. Howell’s 22 points were his most since he scored 15 against Georgia Tech on Jan. 11.

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