Ellington Puts Up 31 Points

CHARLOTTE --- Few players are capable of having a "quiet" 31 points. Wayne Ellington is one of them.

The Tar Heel signee led all scorers as Episcopal Academy coasted to a 67-52 win over Statesville Christian Thursday night at the Bobcats Arena in the opening round of the Dell Curry Shootout.

"It was quiet," Ellington said of his scoring total. "I didn't realize I had that many."

So how can a scorer of his caliber put up that many points and keep it under the radar?

Ellington is efficient on offense, so much so that he rarely has to force the issue to score points.

"It was all in the flow," he explained. "You can't tell I was scoring a lot, it was just basically in the flow of the game."

His shooting line for the night was 14-of-20 from the field. That's the model for efficiency.

And his points came from a variety of ways. First and foremost were the smooth jumpers that he swished from all over the court, whether it was the turnaround in the lane, the spot-up from the elbow or the step back to the three-point line as the quarter ended. On several occasions he took his defender off the dribble and attacked the hoop for a lay-in or a foul. He also created offense for himself on the offensive boards, and totaled nine rebounds on the night. Lastly, came the points in transition, including three breakaway dunks.

There were a few Tar Heels courtside to take in his performance. Raymond Felton sat with UNC assistant coach Joe Holladay on the sideline [pictured at right], while former Carolina star Al Wood was spotted on the baseline.

However, it was the Tar Heel fans in attendance that Ellington most wanted to impress.

"Playing in front of Carolina fans is tough," he said. "If you don't play [well], they'll get on you so you've got to show up. That added a little to [my performance]."

The 6-4 senior has been keeping tabs on television regarding his future teammates, and discussed the team's youth, potential and promising start to the season. Already a Tar Heel at heart, he referred to the 2005-06 Carolina team as "we," and is excited to join the program next season.

"I'm ecstatic to be a part of the top recruiting class in the country," he said, providing individual praise for each one of his fellow signees. "It's going to be a lot of fun, a lot of winning -- hopefully winning a national championship."

As for his message to Tar Heel fans? He's got two words.

"Stay tuned."

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