January 6, 2019 - by
No. 23 Noles Look for 2-0 Start in ACC Play


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) – No. 23 Florida State Women’s Basketball is seeking a 2-0 start to ACC play on the road, but it won’t come easy as it prepares for a matchup at North Carolina on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Carmichael Arena in Chapel Hill, N.C.

The 47th meeting between the Seminoles (13-1, 1-0) and Tar Heels (9-6, 0-1) will air on a variety of the ACC Regional Sports Networks, including FOX Sports Sun, FOX Sports South, FOX Sports Midwest Plus, the YES Network, NBC Sports Washington, NESN Plus, AT&T Sportsnet Pittsburgh, SportsTime Ohio, FOX Sports Detroit Plus, FOX Sports Wisconsin, FOX Sports Southwest Plus, AT&T Sportsnet Las Vegas, AT&T Sportsnet Rocky Mountain and Root Sports Northwest.

Evan Lepler and Chelsea Wilson will be on the call. The game can be heard on the Seminole Gameday App and WQTL 106.1 FM.

The Seminoles are looking to win their first two ACC road games for the ninth time in program history, with it last coming in 2016-17 when FSU opened at Miami with an 81-66 win (12/29/16) and defeated UNC in Chapel Hill by a 90-77 score (1/5/17).

The Seminoles carry a season-best nine-game win streak into Sunday’s game, and also hold a three-game win streak against the Tar Heels. In the 46-game history between the two teams (UNC leads 33-13 overall), FSU’s current three-game winning stretch is its longest in the series history.

Redshirt junior forward Kiah Gillespie has broken out as one of the top players in the ACC this season. Her conference debut last game at Virginia included 19 points, 11 rebounds and three assists.

Gillespie’s third made field goal of the UVA game was her 100th of the season, making her the second-fastest Seminole ever to start her career with 100 made field goals, accomplishing it in just 14 games. Only Sue Galkantas was quicker, doing it in her first 11 games.

In FSU’s four true road games this season, it has won three of them by four points or less (57-56 at Mercer, 57-53 at St. John’s, 63-61 at UVA). Junior guard Nicki Ekhomu is averaging 17.8 points this season on the road, while Gillespie is first with 18.8 points per game on the road.

The Seminoles are 6-2 in their last eight games played against Tobacco Road schools UNC and Duke. Factor in NC State and FSU is 8-4 in its last 12 games against the Triangle schools.

Sophomore center Janelle Bailey of North Carolina is the reigning ACC Player of the Week after recording a 30-point, 14-rebound performance against Howard. She has eight double-doubles this season and is one of the top post players in the conference.

The Tar Heels are coming off a hard-fought 73-66 road loss at No. 3 Louisville in their ACC opener, trimming their deficit to two points on four occasions. Bailey and redshirt junior guard Stephanie Watts each scored 16.

UNC has four dangerous double-figure scorers in Bailey (17.1 points), Watts (15.8), redshirt senior guard Paris Kea (13.6) and junior guard Shayla Bennett (11.9). UNC owns a Top 25 win over 17th-ranked USF at the Paradise Jam, winning 71-69 on Nov. 23.

FSU’s next game will be its ACC home opener on Sunday, Jan. 13, at 2 p.m. against Clemson. The event will include Alumni Weekend, as several former FSU Women’s Basketball student-athletes will be in attendance.

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