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Feb. 11, 2002


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The Game
Virginia, ranked 15th in the AP poll and 13th in the USAToday/ESPN poll, stands at 15-6 overall and 5-5 in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season. The Cavaliers snapped a four-game losing streak with an 85-71 victory over Clemson (Feb. 10) at University Hall. North Carolina has lost its last four games and stands at 6-15 overall and 2-9 in the ACC. The Tar Heels are coming off a 92-77 loss to third-ranked Maryland (Feb. 10) in Chapel Hill, N.C.

The Series vs. North Carolina
North Carolina leads the all-time series with the Cavaliers 114-44 in a rivalry that dates back to the 1910-11 season. Virginia won the first meeting of the 2001-2002 season 71-67 (Jan. 12) in Chapel Hill and have been victorious in four of the last five contests. The last time the Cavaliers won four games in a five game span in the series was nearly 60 years ago. UVa won one of two games in the 1938-39 season and the only meetings in the 1940, 1943 and 1944 seasons.

UVa split the 2000-2001 season series with the Tar Heels with both teams winning at home. North Carolina won the first meeting last season 88-81 in Chapel Hill (Jan. 24), while Virginia posted an 86-66 victory in Charlottesville (Feb. 25). The Cavaliers sweep of the 1999-2000 regular season series, marked the first time that has happened since the 1980-81 season. (UNC, however, won the meeting in the 1981 NCAA Tournament’s Final Four).

Virginia has won the previous two games and eight of the last 13 games in Charlottesville (1989, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1997, 2000, 2001). Since University Hall opened for the 1965-66 season, North Carolina has won 22 of the 36 games between the two teams in the building. North Carolina leads the all-time series in games played in Charlottesville 40-26. Virginia has not won three consecutive home games over North Carolina since the 1980-82 seasons.

North Carolina has won nine of the last 14 games and 19 of the last 27 games between the two teams.

Shooting Lots of Three-Pointers Against the Tar Heels
Since the 1989-90 season, the Cavaliers attempted an average of 21.3 three-point field goals (638 in 30 games) per game against North Carolina. Virginia made 210 of those 638 attempts (32.9 percent) for 7.0 made threes per game. Since the 1988-89 season, the Cavaliers have attempted 20 or more threes in a game against the Tar Heels 20 times.

Three of Virginia’s top six games in terms of three-point field goals attempted have come against North Carolina (the other three are against Clemson). Prior to attempting a school-record 38 three-pointers against Clemson (Jan. 15, 2000), Virginia’s 32 attempts against UNC on February 14, 1990 and March 7, 1997 marked the Cavaliers’ all-time high for three-pointers attempted in a game.

Virginia also set its school record for most three-point field goals made in the February 14, 1990 game against UNC with 15. (Virginia equaled the mark of 15 threes made in a game against Hampton on November 25, 1998.)

Earlier This Season vs. North Carolina
The Cavaliers earned their first ACC win of the season with a 71-67 victory over North Carolina (Jan. 12) at the Dean E. Smith Center in Chapel Hill, N.C. Junior guard Roger Mason, Jr., made four free throws in the final 41 seconds to seal the victory for Virginia.

Mason scored a team-high 18 points, including nine of 10 free throws, to lead the Cavaliers. He also added five rebounds. Senior forward Chris Williams notched 15 points, six rebounds and two steals. Freshman guard Keith Jenifer made his first career start and equaled his career high with nine points and added four assists and three rebounds.

The game featured 10 ties and 20 lead changes, including 16 in the first half. In the first half, the Tar Heels led by as many as six points, 19-13, with 10:14 to play. UVa erased the deficit with seven consecutive points and took a 20-19 lead with 8:21 to go in the opening half. The Cavaliers went on to take a 37-33 halftime advantage.

Mason scored the opening basket of the second half to give UVa its biggest lead of the game (39-33). UNC then went on a 15-1 run to take its largest lead of the game (48-40) with 14:20 to go. A 10-2 Cavalier run knotted the score at 50-50, the first of five ties in the final 12:30 of the game. With the score tied at 63-63, Mason gave UVa the lead for good, 65-63, with a basket. Williams extended the edge to four with a leaning jumper as the shot clock expired. Mason sealed the victory with four consecutive free throws in the final 41 seconds.

Kris Lang led the Tar Heels with 18 points, while Jason Capel added 14 points, nine rebounds and five assists.

Watson Named ACC Player of the Week
Junior forward/center Travis Watson has been selcted as the ACC Player of the Week after scoring 49 points and grabbing 22 rebounds in the Cavaliers’ games against N.C. State (Feb. 6) and Clemson (Feb. 10). He was 14-24 (.583) from the field, including 1-1 from three-point range, and 20-23 (.870) from the free throw line. Watson also had six assists, five steals and one block. He had a double-double in points and reboundsin both games. In the Cavaliers’ 85-68 loss at N.C. State, Watson scored a career-high 29 points and had 12 rebounds. He was 7-12 from the field and 15-17 from the free throw line. He also had three assists and three steals in 35 minutes. In Virginia’s 85-71 victory over Clemson, Watson scored 20 points and had 10 rebounds. He was 7-12 from the field, including 1-1 from three-point range, and 5-6 from the free throw line. Watson has 13 double-doubles on the season.

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