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Williams: Stepheson expected to return to North Carolina lineup

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CHAPEL HILL (AP) -- North Carolina coach Roy Williams says sophomore Alex Stepheson is back with the team after missing nearly a week because of a family illness. Williams says the six-foot-nine reserve forward is expected back at practice today and should play in Wednesday night's game against North Carolina-Asheville. Stepheson left the team January 2nd to go home to California and missed two games. He averages 3.5 points and 4.8 rebounds for the top-ranked Tar Heels. Stepheson is a key member of Williams' rotation, backing up Deon Thompson and Tyler Hansbrough. North Carolina lost backup point guard Bobby Frasor to a season-ending knee injury. Another point guard, Quentin Thomas, played just eight minutes in a win at Clemson last night after missing two games with an ankle injury.

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