Women's Hoops Blog

Posted Mar 29, 2008

The Women's Hoops March Madness Blog is back by popular demand! We'll update this page every day to keep you posted on the Tar Heels ...

Talk with fans on Inside Carolina's Women's Basketball Message Board
Mar. 30: UNC overcame an 18-point deficit to beat Louisville, 78-74, Saturday.

"You find out what you're made of when your back's against the wall," coach Sylvia Hatchell said postgame.

UNC committed 25 turnovers, but was able to turn the tide by forcing 27 Louisville turnovers.

"When you look at those numbers and you still won, I see that as a positive, because I don't think we're going to play like that again," Hatchell said.

With Erlana Larkins struggling, it was LaToya Pringle who was the star - posting 27 points and 11 rebounds.

The Tar Heels will now face LSU in the Elite Eight on Monday at 7:30 p.m. in New Orleans.

Mar. 26: UNC turned a close game into a double-digit lead with a 20-run spanning the halves, and took down Georgia, 80-66, to advance to the Sweet 16.

"At the end of the game, we were sitting over there saying this was probably good for us," coach Sylvia Hatchell said of the second-round experience.

Rashanda McCants was the high scorer with 23 points, while Erlana Larkins posted 18 points and 10 rebounds. The UNC defense forced 24 Georgia turnovers.

The Tar Heels now head to New Orleans, for a Saturday matchup at noon against No. 4-seeded Louisville.

Mar. 24: The Tar Heels cruised to an 85-50 win in their first-round matchup with No. 16 seed Bucknell on Sunday. But they were anything but satisfied with their performance, which included committing 20 turnovers.

"We definitely have to work on our intensity level," Rashanda McCants said postgame.

LaToya Pringle scored 19 points, while Erlana Larkins and Rashanda McCants each scored 15. The Heels held Bucknell to 26.7% shooting.

Next up is No. 8 seed Georgia on Tuesday at 9 p.m.

Mar. 19: The first-round game against No. 16 seed Bucknell is set for noon on Sunday.

Mar. 18: The Tar Heels got a No. 1 seed, though it wasn't the one they were hoping for. Instead of the nearby Greensboro Region, UNC was placed in the New Orleans Region. The first two rounds are in Norfolk, Va., where UNC will play Bucknell on Sunday. "Just go play," coach Sylvia Hatchell told the N&O when asked about what her team can do about the disappointing draw. "There's nothing we can do about it."

The rest of UNC's region includes No. 2 seed LSU, No. 3 seed Louisville and No. 4 seed Oklahoma State.

This is the fourth straight year that the Heels have had a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

LINK: The Bracket

Mar. 17: It's Selection Monday! The Tar Heels expect to earn a No. 1 seed, but won't know for sure until the official announcement of the NCAA Tournament brackets tonight at 7 p.m. on ESPN.

Mar. 14: Erlana Larkins has been named an ESPN.com Second Team All-American. "She's an anchor player," the site says. (LINK)

Mar. 12: Freshman Rebecca Gray discusses the Tar Heels' ACC title in her latest journal entry ... Bright Lights of Success

Mar. 11: Erlana Larkins has been named WBCA National Player of the Month. Larkins led the Tar Heels to a perfect 7-0 record in February en route to claiming the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season championship. The 6-1 forward shot 61.8 percent from the floor during the month of February as the posted 16.9 points per game. She also pulled down an average of 10.1 rebounds while dishing out 4.1 assists per game.

Mar. 10: For the fourth year in a row, the Tar Heels are the ACC Tournament champions. UNC dispatched Duke (for the third time this season), 86-73, in Sunday's title game. Erlana Larkins, who was named Tournament MVP, had 17 points.

Now UNC will wait a week for the NCAA Tournament bracket to be announced, in which they are sure to be a No. 1 seed.

Mar. 9: Led by 25 points and 10 rebounds from Rashanda McCants, who played through a sprained ankle, the Tar Heels took care of Virginia, 80-65, in the ACC Tournament semifinals on Saturday.

UNC will play Duke in the title game on Sunday at 1 p.m. The game will be nationally televised by Fox Sports Net.

Mar. 8: UNC cruised past Clemson, 97-77, in its ACC Tournament opener on Friday. Erlana Larkins put up 25 points and 10 rebounds, while LaToya Pringle added 16 points. The two shot a combined 15-of-19 from the field.

Next up is Virginia on Saturday at 1 p.m. on FSN.

Mar. 7: The Tar Heels begin their quest for a fourth-straight ACC Tournament title today, as they play Clemson at 3 p.m. UNC beat the Tigers by 32 points when the two teams met in Chapel Hill back on Feb. 7.

Mar. 6: And the ACC Coach of the Year is ...

Sylvia Hatchell!

UNC's head coach received 40 of the 49 votes to take home the honor. North Carolina leads the nation in scoring (88 points) and blocks (7.2) per game, while leading the ACC in scoring margin (24 points), rebounding (47.6) and field-goal percentage defense (35.5 percent).

Hatchell, however, is quick to deflect the credit - "They're just great kids and they play well together," she said of her team. "They make me look good."

Mar. 5: The awards keep coming for the Tar Heels ...

* LaToya Pringle was named the 2008 ACC Defensive Player of the Year. She led the ACC with 78 blocks during the regular season, one year after setting the Carolina single-season record for blocked shots, and she's just 10 blocks away from tying Dawn Royster's UNC career record of 329.

* Cetera DeGraffenreid was a unanimous selection to the ACC All-Freshman team. In her first season in Chapel Hill, she has led the No. 2 Tar Heels to an undefeated ACC season. She has started 23 games and was fourth on the team with 11.8 points per game and handed out a team high 96 assists.

* Jessica Breland won the first-ever ACC Sixth Player of the Year award. She averaged 10.8 points and 7.4 rebounds during the regular season, and ranks fourth in the ACC with 65 blocked shots.

Mar. 4: Three Tar Heels have been named to the All-ACC team. Erlana Larkins and LaToya Pringle both earned first-team honors, while Rashand McCants was on the second team.

Check out a video feature from IC's partner, WRAL, that recaps UNC's record-setting run and looks ahead to the ACC Tournament ...

Mar. 3: It's a rout! The Tar Heels jumped out to a 24-10 lead and never looked back, crushing the Blue Devils, 82-51, to complete the first undefeated ACC season in program history. While it was a night for the seniors, with strong farewell performances from Erlana Larkins (14 pts, 10 reb) and LaToya Pringle (14 pts, 8 reb, 6 blk), it was freshman Cetera DeGraffenreid (14 pts, 6 ast, 3 stl) who guided the Heels to victory.

N&O - UNC women take charge
WSJ - UNC women finish undefeated in ACC
UNC - Box Score

Mar. 2: There is much on the line tonight at Carmichael Auditorium. Not only is it Senior Night for Meghan Austin, Erlana Larkins and LaToya Pringle, but the Tar Heels have a chance to sweep Duke and complete their first undefeated ACC season in school history. Tip-off is at 5:30 and will be nationally televised by FSN.

Mar. 1: Coach Sylvia Hatchell's Tar Heels are the No. 2-ranked team in the country, with a 26-2 record and a 13-0 ACC mark.

Note: Welcome back to Inside Carolina's Women's Hoops Blog. Understand that the purpose of this blog is not to be the most comprehensive spot for coverage of UNC women's basketball info. Rather, the goal of this blog is to educate those who don't already know about one of the most exciting teams in Chapel Hill.

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 -by InsideCarolina.com  Mar 3, 2008
UNC-BC: Postgame Quotes + Audio
 -by InsideCarolina.com  Mar 1, 2008

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