ATLANTA, Ga. – The No. 20 North Carolina women’s basketball team takes on No. 15 Georgia Tech on Sunday at the Yellow Jackets’ McCamish Pavilion. Tipoff is noon and the game will be broadcast on the ACC Network.
UNC comes into the matchup 15-2 overall and 5-2 in Atlantic Coast Conference play following a 61-52 win over Virginia at home on Thursday. Georgia Tech (14-4, 5-2) is coming off a 65-55 win on Thursday at Syracuse. With matching conference records, the Tar Heels and Yellow Jackets are tied for fourth place in the ACC standings.
Sunday’s game is the first in a string of three straight matchups against ranked teams for UNC. After facing the Yellow Jackets, the Tar Heels travel to play No. 16 Duke on Thursday then host No. 4 NC State on Sunday.
• UNC and Georgia Tech are meeting for the 81st time in a series that dates back to the 1979-80 season. The Tar Heels lead 60-20 overall and have won the last four matchups.
• The last time the teams met in Atlanta, during the 2019-20 season, the Tar Heels earned a 67-60 win in overtime. Junior Malu Tshitenge, a freshman at the time, is the only one on the current roster to have played in that game. She started at forward and played a career-high 41:26 minutes. (Three of the Tar Heel starters played 45 minutes each in that game.)
Fifth-year senior Jaelynn Murray missed the 2019-20 season with a torn ACL (so she was at that overtime game in 2020 but didn’t play), but played at Georgia Tech as a freshman in 2017-18. On Feb. 15, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia Tech won 79-61. UNC has won the four matchups since then.
• Last year, UNC won 84-59 in Chapel Hill on Feb. 25, 2021. As the Tar Heels celebrated Senior Night, all five starters reached double figures. Then-freshman Deja Kelly led the way with 22 points, which was at that point equal to her career high in scoring.
Noting the Tar Heels
• Deja Kelly leads UNC and is third in the ACC in scoring with 17.9 points per game, up from 11.0 per game last season. In conference games only, she’s second in the league with 19.7 ppg. She’s the only Tar Heel to have scored in double figures in every game this season.
• UNC is 20th this week in both the AP poll and the USA Today/WBCA coaches’ poll and is fifth in the NET ranking.
• UNC ranks in the top two in the ACC in scoring (2), scoring margin (1), rebounds (1), rebounding margin (2), defensive rebounds (2), offensive rebounds (2), field goal percentage defense (2), three-point percentage defense (1), steals (1) and turnover margin (1). The only category in which the Tar Heels are out of the top 10 is rebounding defense (11th).
• UNC has held all but two opponents this season to sub-40 field goal shooting. The only schools to top that have been ACC opponents BC (49.1 percent) and NC State (41.8). Opponents are shooting .328 and Carolina ranks second in the league in field goal percentage defense and first in three-point percentage defense (.234 by opponents).
• The Carolina defense has forced all 16 opponents into double-digit turnovers and has forced 20+ nine times this season, including six times in the past eight games.
• UNC is the only school with two players in the league’s top 10 in rebounding. Alyssa Ustby is third (8.59 per game) and Anya Poole is seventh (7.29).
• Kelly leads the ACC with an .857 free throw percentage (72-84). In ACC games only, she’s even better at .909 (30-33), which is fifth.
• In ACC games only, Kennedy Todd-Williams leads the league in free throw shooting with a .950 percentage (19-20). She was 8-8 vs. Virginia.