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Hurricanes lose ACC debut

ATLANTA (AP) -- Will Bynum made sure Georgia Tech didn't miss
B.J. Elder too much.

Bynum scored 21 points while his injured teammate watched from
the bench, and the Yellow Jackets (No. 10 ESPN/USA Today; No. 9 AP) ruined Miami's
Atlantic Coast Conference debut with an 80-69 victory Thursday
night.

Georgia Tech (10-2, 1-0) bounced back from an overtime loss at
No. 2 Kansas, the game Elder left after hurting his left hamstring.
The team's second-leading scorer is likely to be out through the
weekend.

"With B.J. out, I had to be more assertive," said Bynum, who
did more than just score -- he also had seven assists.

"I like those seven assists better than the 21 points," he
said. "And no turnovers."

The Yellow Jackets built a 14-point halftime lead and held off
Miami's surge in the first 5 minutes of the second half.

Luke Schenscher scored 15 points and Jarrett Jack, who had a
huge game against Kansas, chipped in 14 points and a team-high nine
rebounds.

Not surprisingly, Georgia Tech seemed to have a bit of a letdown
after squandering a 16-point lead to Kansas last Saturday. The
Yellow Jackets lost 70-68 in overtime, falling to the team they
beat last year to reach the Final Four.

"I was glad to get back on the court," coach Paul Hewitt said.
"It was probably the hardest, toughest regular season loss I've
ever experienced."

The Hurricanes (9-3, 0-1) moved from the Big East to the ACC
this season -- a football power hoping to make a mark in a league
known for basketball. They came into their conference debut with an
eight-game winning streak, including an upset of Florida, but
couldn't keep it going despite Guillermo Diaz's 27 points.

"We had a lot of energy," Diaz said. "We expected to win."

Good thing the Yellow Jackets had Bynum. The senior guard went
8-of-15 from the field and kept the Hurricanes off-balance
defensively.

When they got in his face, he sliced to the basket to set up a
shot for himself or a teammate. When Miami backed off, Bynum went
to his jumper, making a couple of 3-pointers.

"He's becoming a complete player," Hewitt said. "Last year,
there were times when I wasn't comfortable putting him out on the
floor for extended minutes if he wasn't scoring."

The Yellow Jackets led 46-32 at halftime, seizing control with a
14-1 spurt. They got big contributions from their freshmen --
Anthony Morrow hit a couple of 3-pointers, while Ra'Sean Dickey
converted a three-point play and assisted on one of Morrow's
long-range jumpers.

Morrow finished with 11 points in a season-high 24 minutes,
while Dickey made the most of his 9 minutes -- six points, six
rebounds and two assists.

Looking for the bright side to Elder's injury, Hewitt believes
it can give the Yellow Jackets a chance to develop more depth for
the brutal ACC schedule.

"Obviously, B.J. is very, very important to us because he can
carry us on any given night," Hewitt said. "While he's out, other
guys are going to have an opportunity to gain some valuable
experience that should help us as we move through the season."

Miami got back in the game with a 15-2 run to start the second
half. Diaz got it going by swishing a 3-pointer, and Anthony King
pulled the Hurricanes to 48-47 when he spun around Schenscher for a
lay-in.

Georgia Tech was clearly flustered.

Isma'il Muhammad was called for an intentional foul when he
knocked down Diaz from behind as the Miami player attempted a
layup. Bynum went in boldly for a dunk, only to get stuffed by
King. Finally, Muhammad missed one of his trademark dunks, looking
around incredulously for a foul call that never came.

But the Yellow Jackets never surrendered their lead. Bynum hit a
shot in the lane, the first of five straight Georgia Tech points.
Miami's momentum was stymied, and Jack finished off the Hurricanes
when he sank a 3-pointer with 2:25 remaining to make it 75-64.

"It's very important that we kept the lead," Tech's Anthony
McHenry said. "When the lead changes, the momentum changes. It can
be devastating to a team."

Diaz did everything he could to pull off the upset. The
sophomore guard hit several acrobatic shots that drew gasps from
the crowd at Alexander Memorial Coliseum, equaling his career high
for points.

But Miami couldn't overcome 37 percent shooting (27-of-73).

"We know we can compete with anybody in the ACC the way we
played in the second half," said Robert Hite, who added 13 points
for the Hurricanes. "We were right there."