CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Sean May provided a spark that North Carolina lacked in its last game.
May recorded 23 points and 16 rebounds, leading the 13th-ranked Tar Heels to an 89-64 victory over Miami in a battle of future conference rivals.
The center sprained his left ankle December 28 against North Carolina-Wilmington and was held scoreless for the first time in his career, playing only 12 minutes. After sitting out against Coastal Carolina, he returned against Kentucky on Saturday but was held to eight points on 3-of-9 shooting in a 61-56 loss.
May was overpowering in the first half against Miami, making 8-of-11 shots for 17 points and grabbing seven rebounds as the Tar Heels (9-2) built a 44-33 lead before pulling away in the second half.
Against Kentucky, the frontcourt trio of May, Rashad McCants and Jawad Williams combined for only 15 points. Against Miami, they combined for 53 as McCants and Williams chipped in with 15 apiece.
Jackie Manuel also contributed 15 points for North Carolina, which posted its 200th win in the Dean Smith Center and avenged a 64-61 road loss to Miami last season, when the Tar Heels were held without a field goal for the final 12 minutes.
North Carolina improved to 93-11 against non-conference opponents in the 18-year history of the "Dean Dome."
Robert Hite scored 27 points for the Hurricanes (10-4), who join the Tar Heels in the Atlantic Coast Conference next season.
North Carolina pounded Miami in transition, forcing 22 turnovers that led to numerous layups and easy baskets. The Tar Heels shot 50 percent (35-of-70) from the field and held the Hurricanes to 37.5 percent (24-of-64).
North Carolina opened the second half with a 20-4 spurt, grabbing a 64-47 lead on Williams' two free throws with 10:21 remaining. The Tar Heels led by as many as 26 in the final minute.
Guillermo Diaz added 17 points for Miami, but leading scorer Darius Rice was held to seven - 10 below his average. Rice had 17 in last season's win over North Carolina.