The North Carolina women’s basketball team (8-8, 3-8 ACC) fell, 61-51, in a home matchup against Florida State (6-4, 5-4 ACC) on Thursday night, resulting in its third straight conference loss.
Both the Tar Heels and Seminoles came out looking energetic but lacking offensive flow, with both shooting at a low percentage from the field — UNC at 20 percent and FSU at 31.3 percent at the end of the first quarter. UNC’s only lead of 2 points also occurred in the first period, with a 2-0 lead at 9:04.
Florida State found its momentum with the help of guard Morgan Jones heading in the second quarter, with Jones scoring seven points in the period and helping put the Seminoles up 29-18 at the end of the half.
But the Tar Heels weren’t completely out for the count.
Graduate guard Stephanie Watts helped with a huge momentum shift, scoring big back-to-back threes with 6:04 left in the third period, bringing the score to 38-25, FSU. Senior center Janelle Bailey followed with a layup, completing an 8-0 Tar Heel run. After coughing up some more points, the Tar Heels finished the third quarter on a strong note with a buzzer beater by redshirt sophomore guard Ariel Young bringing the score to 48-35, FSU to end the period.
However, the Seminoles offense proved too quick for the Tar Heels to try to chip away at their deficit in the fourth quarter, with FSU claiming a 61-51 victory.
Who stood out?
Watts was a clear stand-out for the Tar Heels tonight. Not only did she have 11 points, two 3-pointers and five total rebounds, but her shots came at crucial moments for UNC to build momentum and climb its way back into the game. Watts’ back-to-back threes to end the Seminoles' 9-0 run coming out of halftime reduced the Tar Heels' deficit to just eleven points.