CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) -- Deon Thompson scored 16 of his 20 points after halftime to help No. 6 North Carolina hold off Valparaiso 88-77 on Sunday.
Ed Davis added 16 points for the Tar Heels (3-0), who didn't look sharp yet still earned their third straight double-digit victory to open the season. North Carolina led just 38-31 at halftime, but scored on 12 of 13 possessions to build a 24-point lead midway through the second half.
Yet the defending national champions had plenty of trouble putting away the Crusaders (0-2), who got as close as 84-75 on a 3-pointer from Brandon McPherson with 1:47 left.
North Carolina shot 56 percent for the game, but Valparaiso kept pace at 53 percent in the second half -- including a 7-for-10 effort from 3-point range.
Brandon Wood scored 30 points to lead Valparaiso.