DURHAM — Five weeks ago, the third quarter belonged to the North Carolina women's basketball team.
In the Tar Heels' 92-86 overtime win over Duke on Jan. 21, they scored the first seven points of the third quarter.
On Sunday, though, UNC scored seven points in the entire third quarter. No. 20 Duke outscored North Carolina 25-7, and the collapse helped extend UNC's losing streak to nine, as the team fell 70-54 in Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Heading into halftime, the Blue Devils led the Tar Heels by only two points, 31-29. It seemed as if UNC had a chance to break its eight-game losing streak.
“That third quarter really hurt us,” head coach Sylvia Hatchell said. “Our problem all year has been when a team goes on a run like that, we don’t have someone that can stop the bleeding out there.”
The first points in the third quarter came from a Duke layup at the 8:43 mark. About 30 seconds later, Duke redshirt senior Rebecca Greenwell finished another layup for her first two of 15 points in the third quarter.
“Rebecca had a great game, and she’s a great shooter,” Hatchell said. “She’s proof that good shooting can cure a multitude of sins because the kid could hardly miss today.”
By the 7:29 mark in the third, Greenwell had already scored six of her 15 third-quarter points to give Duke its first double-digit lead of the day, 39-29.
The Tar Heels didn’t score after halftime until there was 3:36 left in the third quarter, when first-year Janelle Bailey hit a much-needed jumper. Bailey ended a 15-0 Blue Devil run that featured four UNC turnovers.