Carolina women win title, 77-60

March 08, 1994|By Milton Kent | Milton Kent,Sun Staff Writer

ROCK HILL, S.C. -- Three years ago, the North Carolina program was about as low as it could get, with 12 losses in 14 Atlantic Coast Conference games.

Last night, the Tar Heels completed an impressive return to the elite of women's basketball with a 77-60 thumping of Virginia in the tournament championship game.

The fifth-ranked Tar Heels (27-2) ended the Cavaliers' two-year reign as tournament champions and got revenge for the regular season, when No. 8 Virginia (25-4) beat North Carolina twice this season and in 15 of the previous 16 meetings.

"We felt like we were due to beat Virginia," said North Carolina coach Sylvia Hatchell.

North Carolina took control from the opening tip, holding Virginia to 20 points in the first half. The Cavaliers made mini-spurts in the second half but got no closer than nine points.

"There were times when we felt we were gaining momentum, but we never were able to string together some points to get going," said Virginia coach Debbie Ryan.

Junior forward Charlotte Smith, the niece of former North Carolina State great David Thompson, had 25 points and 10 rebounds to earn tournament most valuable player honors.

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