Feb. 22, 2014
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -The Virginia women's basketball team (13-13, 6-7 ACC) faces its second-straight ranked opponent when it takes on No. 14/16 NC State (22-5, 9-4 ACC) on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. at Reynolds Coliseum in Raleigh, N.C.
The game will also be on the radio on WINA-1070 AM with John Freeman, Larry Johnson and Myron Ripley calling the action.
Virginia holds a 37-31 advantage in the all-time series. The two teams split a pair of games last year with the Cavaliers downing the Wolfpack 78-59 in Charlottesville before falling 80-59 in Raleigh. Virginia has won three of the last four meetings.
Virginia is looking to defeat three ranked opponents in a season for the first time since the 2008-09 season when it logged victories over No. 5 Tennessee, No. 25 Wake Forest, No. 8 Maryland and No. 11 Florida State. The Cavaliers had back-to-back wins over No. 17 Florida State and No. 6 Maryland in January.
Both teams are coming off failed comeback bids on Thursday night against higher-ranked opponents. NC State trailed No. 7 Duke by 24 points, but cut the deficit to four, 67-63, with 4:12 remaining. Duke went on a 16-7 run to close the contest and finish with an 83-70 victory.
Virginia trailed No. 11/8 North Carolina by 19 points, 58-39, with 11:52 remaining. Virginia cut into the Carolina lead in the final two minutes by drawing contact. The Cavaliers went 8-for-8 from the free throw line in the final 1:39 of the game to initially pull to within six, 77-71, with 40 seconds remaining. A three-pointer from sophomore guard Faith Randolph (Derwood, Md.) narrowed the gap to four, 78-74, with 16 seconds remaining, but Carolina held on for the 80-74 victory.
Randolph came off the bench to score 24 points against UNC, her fifth 20-point game of the season. Randolph went 9-of-9 from the free throw line and pulled in a career-high eight rebounds, including six offensive boards. Randolph is averaging 12.7 points per game, the top scoring average of a non-starter in the ACC this season.
Virginia has dropped four of its last five road contests with a 64-59 victory at Wake the lone W in the span. In those four games, Virginia has shot 40.2 percent from the field, but opponents have been made 51.2 percent of their field goal attempts and 40.7 percent of their three-pointers (44-of-108). Junior center Sarah Imovbioh (Abuja, Nigeria) has averaged 14.0 points and 9.0 rebounds in the last four road contests.
Imovbioh has scored in double figures in each of the last five games and eight of the last nine games, including averaging 20.0 points per game in last week's games at Georgia Tech and against Virginia tech.
After scoring 11 points against North Carolina, senior guard Ataira Franklin (Bowie, Md.) is currently tied with Daphne Hawkins (1984-88, 1538 points) for 12th place on the career list. Franklin needs 45 points to tie DeMya Walker (1996-99) in 11th place on the list and 84 points to tie Tonya Cardoza (1987-91) and move into the top-10 in program history.
Senior guard Lexie Gerson (Fort Washington, Pa.) had three steals against UNC, moving her back into the conference lead in steals at 2.7 per game. Gerson also paces the ACC in assist-to-turnover ratio in conference games at 2.8.
Virginia returns home for its final regular-season home game on Thursday, Feb. 27, hosting Miami at 7 p.m. at John Paul Jones Arena. Franklin, Gerson and fellow-senior captain Kelsey Wolfe (Germantown, Md.) will be honored in a brief ceremony prior to tip-off of the Miami game as part of the annual Senior Day celebration.
Fans may purchase home game tickets through the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office online at VirginiaSports.com, by phone and in person. The Virginia Athletics Ticket Office is located in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium and open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Telephone purchases can be made by calling 1-800-542-UVA1 (8821) or locally at 434-924-UVA1 (8821).
Single-game ticket prices for all games are $10 for Reserved seating, $8 for adult General Admission and $6 for youth (18 & under), senior (60 & over) and UVa faculty/staff General Admission. Family Packages are available for $11 each and include a reserved ticket and a concessions voucher valued at $8. A minimum of four tickets must be purchased to receive package pricing.