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The Daily Tar Heel

Trio Carries Blue Devils Past UNC

Two of Duke's underclassmen struck on the idea of using Superman's 'S' to represent seniors for the night. The rest of the team drew red 'S' tattoos on their arms before tipoff.

Although the 'S' was for the seniors, the super was in a trio of underclassmen: Sheana Mosch, Alana Beard and Michele Matyasovsky. The three picked up the slack from senior Georgia Schweitzer's inconsistent performance to lead No. 4 Duke to a comeback victory against the Tar Heels 72-67.

Schweitzer came into the game needing two 3-pointers to move up in the ACC career record book to 12th. She missed all seven of her 3-point attempts.

"I can have an off night every once and a while," said Schweitzer, who finished the game 5-of-13 from the floor.

Although Schweitzer started the game strong for the Blue Devils, she didn't score in the second half until there was 3:15 left on the clock.

Schweitzer wasn't the only Blue Devil cold in the second half, though. North Carolina took and built a six-point lead after the half, taking advantage of a Duke offense that couldn't buy a make.

But North Carolina couldn't hold on to its lead when the Blue Devils got their attack together.

Matyasovsky found a weakness in UNC's zone defense on the high post and sunk key baskets to help Duke tie the game. When UNC switched to man-to-man to fix its Matyasovsky problem, a new one formed past the 3-point line.

Mosch swished a trey with 2:19 to go, putting momentum squarely in the Blue Devils' hands.

While Mosch worked magic against the Tar Heels, freshman Beard was doing the little things to keep the Tar Heels out.

Beard chipped in assists, a timely blocked shot and helped Schweitzer strip North Carolina guard Cherie Lea of the ball with 14 seconds to go.

She also proved to be clutch at the line, knocking down two free throws with 12 seconds remaining.

"She's one of those players -- that our coaching staff, our entire team -- that we would trust to take that pressure shot," Duke coach Gail Goestenkors said.

Beard has won six ACC rookie of the week awards so far this season.

UNC freshman Candace Sutton did her best to steal some of Beard's thunder by scoring 19 points and pulling down 10 rebounds.

Sutton became a target for the Cameron crowd but remained poised despite singsong shouts of her name and taunts about Beard being the more talented rookie.

"She did a good job in there, and we got the ball to her," UNC coach Sylvia Hatchell said. "I really thought she'd get on the foul line more than she did, but as she gains respect in the league, she will get on the foul line more.

"She's doing a good job for us, and that's opened up the rest of our players, too, and given them some better looks."

Those better looks didn't do a whole lot for the Tar Heels, though. LaQuanda Barksdale and Juana Brown combined for 9-of-26 shooting on the evening.

But it was the defense that Hatchell blamed for the loss. Breakdowns in UNC's man-to-man set helped Mosch get open at the end of the game.

"Down the stretch when you (go to man-to-man) -- it's accountability," Hatchell said. "You've got someone to guard, and you've got to do your job, so your teammates don't have to help off. And when we had to help off, that's when Mosch hits the shots."

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The Sports Editor can be reached at sports@unc.edu.