Local News

Tar Heels Invade Seminole Country

Posted January 5, 1999 6:00 a.m. EST

— The North Carolina Tar Heels snapped an uncommon two-game skid on Saturday, beating up on Clemson 69-53 to even their conference record at 1-1. The Heels will look to up that by one on Tuesday, when they invade Tallahassee to take on host Florida State.

The Seminoles have won two straight games, including an 80-76 overtime victory over Murray State last time out. The 'Noles have been idle since that victory on December 30th. The Tar Heels have amassed a 5-2 record at the Tallahassee-Leon County Civic Center.

Despite the team's recent setbacks, the Tar Heels have blended sufficient scoring with solid defense. UNC is averaging 72.0 ppg (fifth in the ACC) on 48.6-percent shooting (fourth in the conference). At the defensive end of the court, the Heels are giving up just 61.1 ppg (third in the ACC).

The frontcourt is leading the way for the Tar Heels, with forward Ademola Okulaja (13.7 ppg, 8.6 rpg) and centers Brendan Haywood (12.4 ppg, 7.1 rpg) and Kris Lang (10.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg) all producing. Haywood leads the team in field-goal accuracy, connecting on 64.1 percent of his shots. The interior play has allowed one of the best point guards in the country to create along the perimeter. Junior Ed Cota is pouring in 11.0 points per game, while dishing out an ACC-best 7.6 assists per game.

Florida State has been average at both ends of the court this season. The Seminoles are scoring 70.2 ppg, while giving up 64.3. Three players are averaging double-digits for FSU, led by 6-5 senior guard Terrell Baker, who is pouring in 15.1 ppg. Baker is shooting 45 percent from the floor, including 37.7 percent from three-point range (23-of-61).

6-8 junior forward Ron Hale is the team's top interior player and is right behind Baker, adding 14.6 ppg. Hale is a strong finisher in the low post, converting on 51.7 percent of his shots. The perimeter game is aided by sophomore guard Adrian Crawford's 11.4 ppg. Crawford is the team's sharpshooter, drilling 44 percent of his three-point attempts (29-of-66).

Site: Tallahassee-Leon Couty Civic Center (12,200) -- Tallahassee, Florida. Home Record: North Carolina 7-0; Florida State 3-2. Away Record: North Carolina 3-2; Florida State 2-2. Neutral Record: North Carolina 3-1; Florida State 2-1. Conference Record: North Carolina 1-1; Florida State 1-0. Series Record: North Carolina leads 22-5.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: North Carolina 81, Florida State 68 Copyright ©1999 The Sports Network. All Rights Reserved. Contents