BLACKSBURG, Va. — In a back-and-forth contest, the No. 13 North Carolina women’s basketball team (9-4, 0-2 ACC) fell to the No. 7 Virginia Tech Hokies (12-2, 2-2 ACC), 68-65, Sunday night at Cassell Coliseum.
Both teams came out sluggish offensively, as a Cayla King wing 3-pointer for Virginia Tech was the lone scoring play in the first two and a half minutes of action.
North Carolina broke through at the 6:06 mark, as junior guard Kenndy Todd-Williams capped off a loose ball scramble with a midrange jumper. The Hokies would respond with their second make from distance, but a pair of buckets from junior guard Alyssa Ustby aided UNC to a 8-6 lead at the first media timeout.
Ustby would continue to thrive inside, but the Hokies’ ability to get to the foul line helped Virginia tech take a two-point lead after the first quarter.
Junior guard Deja Kelly caught fire to start the second period to help North Carolina retake the lead. The San Antonio native converted a driving floater and pull up 3-pointer to give the Tar Heels a two-point advantage.
While UNC’s lead guard was starting to find her stride, Georgia Amoore kick-started a personal 3-point barrage. The junior guard netted a trio of triples in the quarter — highlighted by an ankle-breaking, stepback connection from the corner — to help the Hokies take a 37-35 lead into the break.
After sitting out the entire second quarter due to foul trouble, Utsby returned to action following the break. The junior guard quickly made her presence felt, connecting on a turnaround jumper to knot the contest up at 37.
After UNC secured a six-point lead midway through the quarter, the Hokies’ sharpshooting guard caught fire once again. Amoore’s play behind the three-point arc helped Virginia Tech take a two point lead into the final quarter.