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DWHoops Presents ACC Women's Basketball Digest

  Weekly ACC WBB Digest for 2/13/2013
Volume 1, Number 14
 
By Rob Clough

ACC Standings, Schedule, & Results

Duke 12-0 1.000 22-1 .957
North Carolina 10-2 .833 22-3 .880
Maryland 10-2 .833 19-4 .826
Florida State 9-3 .750 19-4 .826
Virginia 7-5 .583 15-8 .652
Miami 7-6 .538 16-8 .667
NC State 4-8 .333 12-12 .500
Wake Forest 4-8 .333 11-13 .458
Boston College 3-9 .250 9-14 .391
Georgia Tech 3-10 .231 10-14 .417
Virginia Tech 2-10 .167 8-15 .348
Clemson 2-10 .167 6-17 .261

Last Week's Results:
Thursday, 2/7
  Miami 62, Clemson 46
  UNC 80, Boston College 52
Friday, 2/8
  Maryland 73, Wake Forest 63
  Duke 62, Virginia 41
  Virginia Tech 63, Georgia Tech 61
Sunday, 2/10
  UNC 60, Georgia Tech 58
  Wake Forest 61, Boston College 59
  NC State 79, Clemson 45
  Virginia 50, Virginia Tech 47
  Florida State 93, Miami 78
Monday, 2/11
  Duke 71, Maryland 56

This Week's Schedule
Thursday, 2/14
  Clemson @ Maryland, 7:00 p.m. (ESPN3)
  Duke @ Virginia Tech, 7:00 p.m. (ACCDN on YouTube)
  NC State @ Florida State, 7:00 p.m. (ESPN3)
  Virginia @ Boston College, 7:00 p.m. (BCEagles.com)
  Wake Forest @ North Carolina, 7:00 p.m. (GoHeelsTV)
Sunday, 2/17
  North Carolina @ Florida State, 1:00 p.m. (RSN)
  Virginia Tech @ Clemson, 1:00 p.m. (TigerCast)
  Boston College @ Miami, 2:05 p.m. (HurricaneSports.com)
  Georgia Tech @ NC State, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
  Wake Forest @ Duke, 3:00 p.m. (RSN)
  Maryland @ Virginia, 5:00 p.m. (ESPN2)

Editor's Note: Our schedule and results are presented in pink in
remembrance of Kay Yow

Parsing The Week's Results: There weren't really many surprises in a week that saw Duke handle two upper-division opponents. Duke actually struggled on the road against Virginia, falling behind by 7 in the first half, before a rally late in the first half and into the second half gave the Devils a cushion that ballooned up to 21 points late in the game. The Terps had kept pace after nearly blowing a 20 point lead against Wake Forest, a game that painfully revealed how susceptible they are to ball pressure. Meanwhile, UNC coach Sylvia Hatchell picked up career wins #900 and #901 by crushing Boston College and then ekeing out a win against Georgia Tech on the road. The latter was a classic UNC win: behind late in the game but never doubting their ability to come back. As per usual, Tierra Ruffin-Pratt made big plays down the stretch, including the game-winning free throws. The callow Jackets had the drive and energy to win, but simply didn't have the experience or savvy to execute in the clutch. That last foul on Ruffin-Pratt came on a foul eighty feet from the basket after the Jackets had just tied the game. Hatchell is now only second to Pat Summitt in terms of all-time wins, and she shows no signs of stopping with a fine recruiting class coming in next year.

NC State got back to .500 and nursed their slim postseason hopes by pasting Clemson; it was their first home game in a month that wasn't against a ranked team. Virginia narrowly avoided what would have been a damaging loss by gutting out a win against a suddenly feisty Virginia Tech squad. Wake Forest beat Boston College for bookend league wins after five straight losses since their double-OT victory over the Eagles earlier in the year. They are 2-7 since their now-puzzling upset over Florida State. The ACC is a wheel that grinds, and grinds slowly.

Best Win: Duke 71, Maryland 56. The Game of the Year in the ACC (part 2) went to Duke, giving the Devils a 2-game lead over the Terps and UNC with six games left to play. Chelsea Gray had a career high 28 points and Terp coach Brenda Frese was tossed with four minutes remaining and her team down by 9. The frontcourts of both teams battled to a standstill, so it wasn't surprising to see Duke's backcourt emerge victorious against a depleted Terp squad. The ACC player of the year crown shifted from Maryland's Alyssa Thomas to Gray for the moment. You can view our ACCWBBDigest coverage here or our expanded DWHoops coverage starting here.

Worst Loss: Virginia Tech 63, Georgia Tech 61. The Jackets somehow let one of the worst offensive teams in the ACC shoot 53% from the floor, including 7-10 from three. They couldn't stop Monet Tellier, who had 24 points, and couldn't generate enough of their own offense against a stingy VT club to overcome their lapses. For a GT club that looked like they were on the verge of figuring things out, this was a dispiriting loss. But for the Hokies, this was a rare bright spot in yet another difficult season.

Trending Up: Florida State. Despite not having center Chelsea Davis or wing Chasity Clayton available, the Noles went to Coral Gables and blew the Hurricanes away. FSU put six players into double figures with their three point guard attack, as Morgan Toles and Cheetah Delgado had 7 assists apiece. Miami just had no answer for FSU's skill and ballhandling. FSU quietly moved to within a game of both Maryland and UNC and certainly has a firm grip on a top-four seed in the ACC tournament.

Trending Down: Clemson. The poor Tigers were pounded by Miami and NC State clubs hungry to pick up an easy win against a league doormat, and one can see the effect that a season filled with loss after loss can have on a team. The good news for Clemson is that if this club has any pride at all, four winnable games remain on their schedule. If Itoro Coleman wants to make a statement about her ability to motivate a young team, now is the time.

Surprise Player Of The Week: Latifah Coleman, UNC. On a day when teammate Tierra Ruffin-Pratt had 12 turnovers against Georgia Tech's pressure defense, Coleman was outstanding with 13 points, 3 rebounds and 6 steals, including a crucial theft with seconds left after TRP had just given the Heels a 1-point lead. Coleman had 7 points and 3 assists against BC as well. If she can steadily contribute at the point off the bench, then UNC's chances of winning the ACC tournament will greatly increase.

Stat Of the Week: 0-10. That's Maryland coach Brenda Frese's all-time record in Cameron Indoor Stadium vs Duke, as compared to 4-6 vs. the Blue Devils in College Park. It should be noted that she lost her first eight games against Duke, but broke through in 2006 with two neutral court postseason wins, including the memorable 2006 national championship game. But since Joanne P. McCallie took over at Duke, Frese's mark against the Devils is 6-8. She'll have a chance to even up that record before Maryland leaves the ACC (possibly even this season), but it's not guaranteed that the two programs will meet twice next year. It also should be noted that McCallie has been defeated by ACC foes in Cameron just twice, falling only to UNC and the Terps in 2008. The latter was not a win for Frese as Maryland was led by assistant coach Daron Park during her brief maternity leave. Frese's ability to return the Terps to league and national prominence has been impressive, as is her coaching job with this year's injury depleted roster.

Three Games To Watch (2/13 -2/19/2013):

  1. NC State @ Florida State, 2/14 (ESPN3): The Wolfpack Women were up 12 in the second half over FSU in their first meeting before falling apart. NC State has won three of their past four games and have the size and shooting to keep up with the Noles. Do they have the mental toughness to make plays down the stretch?

  2. UNC @ FSU, 2/17 (RSN): The Heels blew out the Noles in their first meeting, but FSU is playing really well at the moment. If they can hit shots at their usual clip, they will put pressure on UNC to dominate on the rebounding end of things. Of course, FSU has to find a way to keep the ball out of the hands of UNC's imposing frontcourt duo of Waltiea Rolle and Xylina McDaniel.

  3. Maryland @ Virginia, 2/17 (ESPN2): This is a potential trap game for the Terps. Virginia probably doesn't have enough size to compete with the Terps, but they play very sticky defense and rarely leave their zone. If Maryland can't hit from three, this game could be competitive.

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