GAME NOTES: The North Carolina Tar Heels hope to continue their recent trend of success as they journey to the Comcast Center in College Park to square off with the Maryland Terrapins.
Roy Williams's Tar Heels notched their fifth win in a row on Sunday as they trounced Florida State, 79-58, in Chapel Hill behind 21 points from James Michael McAdoo. The recent flurry of victories has helped UNC rise to third in the ACC standings with an 11-5 league record. The Tar Heels are a very dynamic team offensively as they rank 14th in the nation in points per game (77.8), second in assists (17.8) and are second in the ACC with 214 made 3- pointers.
The Terrapins won for the second time in three outings on Saturday as they defeated Wake Forest, 67-57, on the road to collect their 20th win of the season and rise to 8-8 in the ACC race. Dez Wells pumped in 23 points while Alex Len grabbed 10 rebounds in the decision. Mark Turgeon, who use to be an assistant coach for Williams at Kansas from 1988-1992, has implemented a stress on rebounding which has helped Maryland collect 41.3 boards per tilt, which is the third most among Division I programs.
Maryland trails the all-time series 119-57, which dates back to 1924. North Carolina has a 46-37 advantage in College Park, although Maryland has won six of nine at the Comcast Center. The Tar Heels have won five straight overall in the series. Maryland's last win came on Feb. 7, 2010. UNC defeated Maryland, 62-52, in Chapel Hill on Jan. 19.
In addition to McAdoo's excellence against FSU, Reggie Bullock chimed in with a double-double of 20 points and 10 rebounds. UNC shot 55.4 percent from the floor and opened the game up early on with a 20-3 first half run. P.J. Hairston continued to impress was well as he went 6-of-11 from the field to net 16 points. Freshman point guard Marcus Paige seems to have settled into his role of floor general as he dealt out nine assists to give him a total of 21 over the span of his past three games. McAdoo, Bullock and Hairston account for 54.3 percent of UNC's offense.
Maryland displayed toughness on the defensive end in their win over Wake Forest, holding the Demon Deacons to 32.7 percent shooting from the field and forcing them into 18 turnovers. The Terps held a 37-29 edge in the rebounding battle and connected on 47.5 percent of their field-goal tries as Nick Faust and Logan Aronhalt contributed nine points apiece in the win. Wells and Len are tied for the team's scoring lead with 12 ppg each and Lens also registers 8.1 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per tilt. A win over UNC would be very helpful for the Terps, who are thought to be on the fringe of earning an at-large bid to the upcoming Big Dance.
This is most likely going to be a very closely contest between two programs looking to bolster their resumes before the regular season concludes. The Terps were able to knock off some tough competitors such as NC State and Duke in their own arena already this season, so there is no reason to think they are not capable of repeating that success against UNC.
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