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The Daily Tar Heel

UNC women's basketball suffers worst loss of season against No. 11 Florida State, 103-65

Paris Kea gets pressured by South Alabama defenders in Sunday's 85-84 loss

North Carolina junior Paris Kea (22) comes under heavy pressure by South Alabama's Candice Williams (0) during Sunday afternoon's game at Carmichael Arena. 

The North Carolina women’s basketball team dropped its ACC opener on the road against No. 11 Florida State (13-1, 1-0 ACC) on Sunday. The Tar Heels (10-4, 0-1 ACC) were never really in the 103-65 blowout.

What happened?

After a tight first period, Florida State blew open the game with a dominant second quarter. The Seminoles outscored the Tar Heels 35-15 in the deciding frame, establishing a lead that proved to be insurmountable.

Who stood out?

Imani Wright and Shakayla Thomas combined for 55 points to lead Florida State to the big win. Thomas, who was named to the preseason All-ACC team, added 13 rebounds to register a double double. Guards Nausia Woolfolk, A.J. Alix and Nicole Ekhomu also had double-digit scoring games, the 13th time in 14 games at least four Seminoles have scored in double figures.

Meanwhile, North Carolina struggled offensively under stifling Seminole defense. Paris Kea was the high-scoring Tar Heel of the game with 17 points. Three Tar Heels scored in double digits. 

When was it decided?

That pivotal second quarter decided the outcome of this one. Florida State used a 15-1 run to open the period and effectively put the game away. By the time Paris Kea knocked down a jumper with 6:42 left, the Tar Heels were down 16 points in a hostile environment and out of the game. 

Why does it matter?

The opening game of conference play is crucial to a team’s hopes of a championship. In a competitive ACC, starting off on the right foot may be even more critical. The conference has two of the top three teams in the country and four ranked teams overall.

The Seminoles have legitimate aspirations for the regular season conference title. The Tar Heels, though, faced an uphill battle to compete in the league before this game. 

When do they play next?

The Tar Heels stay on the road in ACC play and will take on Boston College (5-9, 0-1 ACC) in Chestnut Hill on Thursday.

@jleland_

sports@dailytarheel.com

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