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Feb. 11, 2003


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The Game
Virginia stands at 14-7 overall and 5-4 in the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2002-2003. The Cavaliers are coming off a 61-58 victory over N.C. State (Feb. 9) at University Hall. North Carolina stands at 12-10 overall and 3-6 in the ACC this season. In its last game, the Tar Heels defeated Florida State 61-60 (Feb. 8) in Chapel Hill, N.C.

The Series vs. North Carolina
North Carolina leads the all-time series with the Cavaliers 114-46 in a rivalry that dates back to the 1910-11 season. Virginia won the first meeting of the 2002-2003 season 79-72 (Jan. 11) at University Hall and swept the 2001-2002 season series, winning 71-67 (Jan. 12) in Chapel Hill and 73-63 (Feb. 12) in Charlottesville. It marked the second time in three seasons UVa has swept the season series from the Tar Heels. Virginia also swept the regular season series in 1999-2000 for the first time since the 1980-81 season. (UNC, however, won the meeting in the 1981 NCAA Tournament’s Final Four).

The Cavaliers have won four consecutive games in the series and six of the last seven contests. UVa’s current four-game winning streak is its longest in the series since the early 1900s. The Cavaliers won five consecutive games against North Carolina from 1917-18 to 1919-20 (45-35 in 1917-18, 40-29 and 31-21 in 1918-19, 40-25 and 37-31 in 1919-20). UVa won the first eight games in the series from 1910-11 to 1915-16.

North Carolina’s last win in the series was an 88-81 decision (Jan. 24) in Chapel Hill in the 2000-2001 season.

Virginia’s victory in Chapel Hill in the 1999-2000 season (90-76 – Feb. 20) was its first ever triumph at the Smith Center. The Cavaliers lost their previous 14 games in the Dean Dome. The win also snapped UVa’s 18-game losing streak in Chapel Hill. Prior to 1999-2000, the previous Virginia victory in Chapel Hill came on February 3, 1981, when UVa posted an 80-79 overtime victory.

Despite Virginia’s win in 1999-2000, the Tar Heels have dominated the series in games played in Chapel Hill, winning 57 of the 62 meetings. The Cavaliers are 2-15 at the Smith Center.

Virginia’s wins in Chapel Hill occurred on: February 24, 1911 – UVa 18, UNC 15; January 25, 1973 – UVa 84, UNC 78 (UNC ranked third); February 3, 1981 – UVa 80, UNC 79 (UNC ranked 11th) in overtime; February 20, 2000 – UVa 90, UNC 76; and January 12, 2002 – 71-67.

North Carolina has won nine of the last 16 games and 19 of the last 29 games between the two teams.

Keys to the Game
Virginia needs to shoot the ball well tonight to help its chances to win. Since the 1989-90 season, the Cavaliers are 12-20 against North Carolina, but are 8-2 when they out-shoot the Tar Heels. The Wahoos are 4-18 when the Tar Heels out-shoot them.

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 (681 in 32 games) per game against North Carolina. Virginia made 226 of those 681 attempts (33.2 percent) for 7.1 made threes per game. Since the 1988-89 season, the Cavaliers have attempted 20 or more threes in a game against the Tar Heels 21 times.

Three of Virginia’s top four and five of the Cavaliers’ top nine games in terms of three-point field goals attempted have come against North Carolina (the other four 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 Against North Carolina
Junior guard Todd Billet scored a game-high 24 points and senior forward/center Travis Watson registered 18 points and 12 rebounds to lead Virginia to a 79-72 victory over North Carolina (Jan. 11) at University Hall. The game also marked the return of junior guard Majestic Mapp to the lineup after missing UVa’s last 70 games with a torn ACL.

Billet made six three-pointers in scoring his 24 points and had three rebounds, two assists and two steals, while Watson notched his seventh double-double of the season (fourth consecutive) with 18 points and a game-high 12 rebounds. He also had three assists and three blocked shots. Sophomore forward Elton Brown and sophomore guard Keith Jenifer both tallied 10 points. Brown added six rebounds, while Jenifer recorded six assists and two steals.

Mapp entered the game at the 7:23 mark of the first half and played just over two minutes. He last appeared in a game for UVa on March 15, 2000 against Georgetown – 1,032 days prior to the UNC game.

The Cavaliers scored the first nine points of the game and led 48-30 at halftime. UVa shot 57.6 percent (19-33) in the first half and made eight three-point field goals. Billet scored 17 of his 24 points in the first stanza.

In the second half, North Carolina outscored UVa 14-3 in the first 3:28 to trim the Cavalier lead to seven, 51-44. Virginia rebuilt its lead to 15 points on three occasions only to see the Tar Heels make another run. North Carolina came within six, 75-69, with 2:35 to play on a pair of free throws by Jawad Williams, but could get no closer.

UVa shot 49.1 percent (28-57) from the field in the game, while UNC was 29-72 (40.3 percent) from the floor. The Tar Heels held a 40-35 edge in rebounds, including a 22-12 edge on the offensive glass.

Williams led the Tar Heels with 18 points and nine rebounds, while Rashad McCants added 16 points.

Community Service
Junior guard Todd Billet is having an influence both on and off the court for Virginia. Billet’s on-the-court exploits are apparent, but his off-the-court contributions to the Charlottesville community are even more impressive. Billet is organizing a minority bone marrow registration and blood drive which will be held on Saturday, February 15 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at The Cage, located in Onesty Hall. Billet is organizing the event after being involved in the same activity at Rutgers.

Although the bone marrow registration and blood drive is specifically targeting minorities, all ethnicities are encouraged to register and/or donate blood.

Billet said that he wanted to start the registration and drive at UVa to spread awareness about the importance of becoming a bone marrow and blood donor, especially for minority groups. “For someone with leukemia, their only hope may be a bone marrow transplant, which requires a donor. However, minorities face a limited number of possible bone marrow matches because a relatively low number of minorities register. “We are targeting minorities because they are the largest group in need, but we want everyone to come out to donate and register,” said Billet. “By doing so, you might possibly save someone’s life.”

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