February 7, 2009
The Cavalier men's basketball team had a rough trip to Chapel Hill, falling to North Carolina on Saturday, 76-61. The loss drops Virginia's record to 7-12, 1-7 in the ACC, while the Tar Heels have now won their last seven.
This game followed somewhat of a different script, as Virginia remained close throughout the first half. Late in the frame, the Cavs pulled the scored to within on, 24-23 when Jeff Jones' shot was goal-tended, but North Carolina went on a late run to go into halftime up 33-25.
The second half saw the Tar Heels hit some quick shots right out of the gate, including a Wayne Ellington three pointer in the first two minutes to widen the gap. North Carolina used a balanced attack to pull away from Virginia and remain on top. At one point, UNC had opened up a lead of 23 points and was able to cruise to victory.
Ellington led all scorers on the night with 20 points, while Tyler Hanbrough added 15 points and 13 rebounds for the Tar Heels. Jones led Virginia with 19 points in 37 minutes, while Sylven Landesberg chipped in 16 and Sammy Zeglinski added eleven.
While the Cavs went into the half with some momentum, the Tar Heel surge out of the game seemed to get the crowd very involved and give North Carolina the boost it needed. Virginia had trailed by double digits at halftime in each of its previous five contests.
Next up for the Cavaliers is a rematch with Florida State in Tallahassee. The Seminoles topped Virginia, 73-62, back on January 24 at John Paul Jones Arena.