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Three-Pointer Sinks Jackets at North Carolina, 89-88

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — North Carolina’s Jamie Cherry hit a desperation three-pointer with two seconds on the clock to lift the Tar Heels to an 89-88 victory over Georgia Tech women’s basketball Thursday night in Carmichael Arena. Zaire O’Neil finished with her second double-double of the season behind 16 points and 10 rebounds.

How It Happened
Georgia Tech raced out of the gate, grabbing a double-digit lead in the first quarter as Katarina Vuckovic drained three treys to open the game. The Tar Heels’ offense was fueled early by Paris Kea who scored the first eight UNC points. The Jackets took an 11-point advantage with 3:46 left in the first quarter and quickly opened a 16-point lead off an Antonia Peresson triple. But the Tar Heels closed the first frame with an 11-3 run and opened the second quarter with a trey to close the gap within five points, 32-27. Tech answered with a 9-4 run to reopen a 41-31 edge, but UNC outscored Tech 8-4 in the final minutes to pull the game to 46-42 at halftime.

The game remained a four-point ballgame after an even third quarter with each team scoring 25 points. UNC took its first lead of the game opening the frame with a 6-3 spurt as the teams worked through seven lead changes and four ties in the stanza.

North Carolina outscored Tech 22-17 in the final frame, but it all came down to the final seconds. Tied at 86-86 with 41.8 to play, Imani Tilford and Antonia Peresson hit the back ends of two pairs of free throws to give Tech an 88-86 advantage with the clock wound down to 6.5 seconds. Following a Tar Heel timeout, Cherry launched a three-pointer from beyond the top of the key to give UNC a one-point edge. The Jackets were unable to get a shot off as time expired.

Tech Tidbits
* With the loss, the Jackets drop to 14-12 on the season and 3-10 in the ACC
* Francesca Pan led Tech with 18 points followed by Zaire O’Neil with 16 points. Antonia Peresson added 13 points, while Imani Tilford contributed 12 points.
* The Jackets won the rebounding battle, 40-28, led by Elo Edeferioka with 11. Tech finished with an 18-9 edge on the offensive glass, converting the boards into 20 second chance points
* UNC was 9-of-19 from three-point range in the first half and hit six after falling behind by 16 points
* The Tar Heels finished 14-of-27 from three-point range and shot 48.3 percent (28-58) from the floor for the game
* Tech shot 47.1 percent (33-70) from the field and 10-of-22 from three-point distance
* The Jackets were 12-of-17 at the charity stripe to Carolina’s 19-of-23 performance

Next Up
After a two-game road swing, Georgia Tech returns to McCamish Pavilion for its final two regular season home contests next. The Jackets play host to Pittsburgh on Sunday, Feb. 19 at 2 p.m. on ACC Network Extra.

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