CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – The Virginia women’s basketball team (14-9, 3-9 ACC) suffered a 73-62 loss at No. 11 North Carolina (17-5, 8-3 ACC) on Thursday (Feb. 2) at Carmichael Arena in Chapel Hill, N.C.
North Carolina went on a 15-2 run in the second quarter to break open a previously one-point game to build up a 17-point lead. The Cavaliers narrowed the gap to 33-21 at halftime and cut the deficit to eight points in the third period but could not get any closer. Carolina extended its advantage to 18 points with 5:15 left in the game before the Cavaliers narrowed the gap down to the final 11-point deficit.
London Clarkson scored a career-high 23 points, one of three Cavaliers to finish the game in double figures. McKenna Dale scored 15 points with a team-high nine rebounds. Camryn Taylor scored 10 points with seven rebounds, including grabbing the 500th rebound of her collegiate career.
Kayla McPherson came off the bench to score 14 points for the Tar Heels. Anya Pool had 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The game started slow for both teams, with the offenses combining to score five points in the first 4:30 of play. Four points from Taylor gave UVA a 6-3 lead with 3:30 left in the opening period. A long two from McPherson gave the Tar Heels their first lead of the game, 9-8, with 54 seconds left in the quarter, the same advantage they held at the end of the period.
North Carolina opened the second quarter with back-to-back buckets to build up a 14-8 lead. A three-pointer from Dale cut the gap to 14-11 with 8:26 remaining. The Tar Heels used a three-minute scoreless span by the Cavaliers to build up a 21-11 lead. Taylor ended the run with a layup with 5:35 remaining in the period, but the Tar Heels responded with three layups in a minute span to extend their lead to 27-13. A three-pointer from Taylor Valladay with 2:38 remaining ended what had extended into a 15-2 run by the Tar Heels. The Cavaliers made their last three field goal attempts of the quarter, including a pair of jumpers from Alexia Smith, to narrow the gap to 33-21 at the break.
North Carolina scored the first four points of the second half before Clarkson answered with back-to-back layups. A three-pointer from Dale narrowed the gap to single digits, 39-30, and another trey made it an eight-point game, 41-33, with 4:51 remaining, but UNC answered with a 9-2 run to go up 51-35 with 1:28 remaining in the period. A jumper from Dale with 19 seconds left made it a 13-point deficit heading into the final period of play.
The Cavaliers and Tar Heels traded buckets through the first four minutes of the final period. An 8-1 run midway through the quarter built the Tar Heel lead up to 18, 68-50, with 5:15 remaining. The Cavaliers narrowed the deficit down to 11 by outscoring UNC 8-2 in the final two minutes of play, including closing out the game by going 4-of-4 from the free throw line.
- Virginia shot 38.3 percent (23-of-60) while North Carolina shot 53.1 percent (26-of-49)
- North Carolina started the second quarter going 9-of-10 from the field, finishing 9-of-12, as well as being 5-of-5 from the free throw line
- Virginia held a 30-29 edge in rebounding
- Camryn Taylor grabbed the 500th rebound of her collegiate career in the third quarter. She had 297 of those rebounds while playing at Marquette
- London Clarkson is the fifth different Cavalier to score 20 or more points in a game. Her previous career high was 18 against Boston College last month (Jan. 15)
- Clarkson was 8-of-14 from the field and 7-of-8 from the free throw line
- Clarkson is the first Cavalier to come off the bench to score 20 points since Shemera Williams did so against Louisville on Jan. 23, 2020
- Taylor Valladay had seven assists and eight points
- Sam Brunelle did not dress for the game due to a foot injury
- North Carolina has won seven consecutive games vs. UVA and 30 of the last 33 contests
- UVA has lost 15 straight road meetings with the Tar Heels. UVA’s last victory in Chapel Hill came on Jan. 11, 2001
FROM HEAD COACH AMAKA AGUGUA-HAMILTON
“Losing five games in a row is frustrating, but we are getting better in different areas. I think that we will be way better when we can have consistent play from each player and get everybody on the same page at one time, but there were some positives to take away from this on the road to a ranked team, but we have to keep getting better.”
ON THE HORIZON
- Virginia closes the week at Pitt on Sunday, Feb. 5 at 2 p.m. in a game that will be televised on the ACC Network
- The Cavaliers return home to host Louisville on Thursday, Feb. 9 at 7 p.m.