CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Guards Joe Harris and Malcolm Brogdon each had 16 points as Virginia beat North Carolina 76-61 on Monday night in an Atlantic Coast Conference border showdown.
The Cavaliers (14-5, 5-1 ACC), off to their best conference start in nearly 20 years, led 38-29 at halftime and then went on a 13-7 run to begin the second half to take a 51-36 lead.
Guard London Perrantes had nine assists for the Cavaliers, who have won 12 straight ACC home games. Guard Justin Anderson contributed 13 points for Virginia.
North Carolina (11-7, 1-4) received 15 points from forward Kennedy Meeks and forward James Michael McAdoo had 11.
Brogdon gave the Cavaliers its first 12-point lead of the game on a 3-pointer early in the second half to make it 43-31. Forward/center Mike Tobey made it 45-31 seconds later on two free throws. After a turnover by UNC, Harris made a free throw to give the hosts a 48-33 advantage.
The Tar Heels cut the lead to 58-47, but Virginia built the lead back to 64-49 on a baseline drive by Mitchell with 7:36 remaining. Anderson hit two free throws with 7:30 left for a 66-49 lead and a basket by Mitchell made it 72-53 with 3:50 to go.
Virginia guard Joe Harris hit his first three 3-pointers as the Cavaliers took a 9-7 lead in a tight, back-and-forth first half.
North Carolina forged ahead 27-26 on a dunk by Meeks with 5:50 left in the first half. But Perrantes hit a 3-pointer in the closing seconds of the first half to give the Cavaliers a 38-29 lead at the break.
Harris scored 12 points in the first half and forward Anthony Gill had eight as Virginia shot 51.9 percent from the field.
North Carolina shot just 39.4 percent from the field in the first half as guard Leslie McDonald and McAdoo each had seven points.
Perrantes had eight of his team’s 10 assists in the first half as the Cavaliers committed just five turnovers and had assists on all but four field goals.
Virginia returns to action Saturday with a home game against Virginia Tech, and North Carolina hosts Clemson on Sunday.