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(19) North Carolina (21-7) at Virginia Tech (9-18)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, March 1, 2:30 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Cassell Coliseum (9,847) -- Blacksburg, Virginia. Television: ACC Network. Home Record: UNC 14-3, Virginia Tech 8-9. Away Record: UNC 5-4, Virginia Tech 1-6. Neutral Record: UNC 2-0, Virginia Tech 0-3. Conference Record: UNC 11-4, Virginia Tech 2-13. Series Record: North Carolina leads, 63-13.

GAME NOTES: With wins in 10 straight games, the 19th-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels will try to continue their rise in the ACC when they visit the Virginia Tech Hokies at Cassell Coliseum.

North Carolina's most recent victory did not come easily, as Marcus Paige scored 31 of his career-high 35 points after halftime to lift the Tar Heels to an 85-84 overtime win against NC State. They are now sporting a 21-7 overall record and trailing third-place Duke by a half game in the league standings. They close out the season against the Blue Devils, but will contend with Notre Dame next.

Virginia Tech has been stuck in reverse pretty much all season. The Hokies have lost three straight following just their second conference win of the campaign against Miami-Florida on Feb. 15. They will play their final two games of the season on the road against Maryland and Georgia Tech, respectively.

There has been no mystery as to which of these programs has been the more dominant historically, with North Carolina owning a 63-13 all-time series advantage against the Hokies. That includes a 72-60 victory in last year's lone meeting.

Paige played brilliantly in the second frame to lift North Carolina over NC State. He connected on 11-of-21 shots from the floor overall, including a 7- of-12 showing from 3-point range, while also totaling six rebounds and five assists. The Tar Heels shot an even 50 percent from the floor and had seven 3- pointers after intermission.

The Tar Heels can always get hot offensively. After all, they are second in the ACC in scoring (77.3 ppg) and third in field goal percentage (.462). North Carolina actually leads the conference in assists (15.9 apg) and rebounds (41 rpg), ranking among the top-20 in the country in each category. Paige (17.5 ppg 5.6 apg) keeps the team moving at the offensive end, leading the way in both scoring and assists. James Michael McAdoo (14.2 ppg, 6.9 rpg) is a solid performer down low, and Leslie McDonald (10.8 ppg) and Brice Johnson (10.3 ppg) provide depth.

Virginia Tech clashed with Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium on Tuesday and, expectedly, limped away with a 66-48 loss. The Hokies connected on only 42.6 percent of their shots from the floor, while totaling almost twice as many turnovers (15) as assists (eight).

Just about every game the Hokies have been involved in has featured a struggle at the offensive end. They are netting just 64.6 ppg and shooting 41.2 percent from the floor. They also only manage 11.2 apg. However, the Hokies are the next best rebounding team in the ACC after the Tar Heels (37.5 rpg). Jarell Eddie (13.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg) leads the team both in scoring and rebounding, although he is only shooting 35.5 percent from the floor. The second option on the roster is Ben Emelogu (10.8 ppg), who also shoots below 40 percent. However, Emelogu is suffering from a strained left Achilles, which has him listed as questionable for this bout.

Even at full strength, the Hokies don't have the consistency on offense to keep up with or knock off the surging Tar Heels. Expect UNC to stay hot with a relatively easy road win.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: North Carolina 78, Virginia Tech 67

03/01 11:06:28 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 3
CLB 4
Final
CAR 19
PIT 37
Final
NYY 5
TOR 2
Final
MIA 1
WAS 2
Final
BAL 2
BOS 3
Final
PIT 1
MIL 0
Final
ATL 2
NYM 10
Final
TAM 5
CWS 10
Final
MIN 2
CLE 7
Final
KAN 5
DET 2
Final
HOU 8
SEA 3
Final
CHC 5
LOS 8
Final
ANA 1
TEX 2
Final
OAK 8
PHI 6
Final
COL 8
ARI 3
Final
SDP 8
SFG 2
Final
STL 2
CIN 7
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
BAL
 
7:05pm Tonight
CLE
KAN
 
7:07pm Tonight
TOR
SEA
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CWS
 
7:10pm Tonight
ATL
PIT
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
HOU
 
8:05pm Tonight
CHC
STL
 
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
ARI
 
10:05pm Tonight
OAK
ANA
 
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
COL
 
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
SFG
 
Final
CAR 3
CLB 4
Final
WAS 1
BUF 0
Final
CLB 4
STL 3
Final
EDM 3
CAL 1
Final
CAL 1
EDM 0
1:30pm Today
NYI
OTT
 
6:00pm Tonight
NYI
OTT
 
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
DET
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYR
NJD
 
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
TOR
 
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
WAS
 
8:00pm Tonight
WIN
MIN
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
STL
 
9:00pm Tonight
COL
ANA
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
COL
 
10:00pm Tonight
ARI
LOS
 
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
ARI
 
Final
CLE 21
BAL 23
Final
STL 31
DAL 34
Final
DET 19
GBP 7
Final
NYG 30
HOU 17
Final
JAC 17
IND 44
Final
NOS 20
MIN 9
Final
NEP 16
OAK 9
Final
BUF 10
SDC 22
Final
CIN 33
TEN 7
Final
PHI 37
WAS 34
Final
ARI 23
SFX 14
Final
SEA 26
DEN 20
Final
MIA 15
KAN 34
Final
CAR 19
PIT 37
8:30pm Tonight
NYJ
CHI