#10 North Carolina Women's Basketball 2013-2014 Preview

North Carolina Tar Heels

Overall Rank: #10
Conference Rank: #4 ACC
#10 North Carolina Women's Basketball 2013-2014 Preview
North Carolina Team Page


It was a very good year for North Carolina women’s basketball, unless you count the last game of the season. But that can be excused. There is no shame running up against a Delaware basketball team led by Elena Delle Donne and losing. The Tar Heels finished one game shy of 30 victories and lost despite being the No. 3 overall seed in its region. Can the Tar Heels repeat that success in 2013-14?  

2012-13 Record: 29-7, 14-4
2012-13 Postseason: NCAA (lost to Delaware in second round, 78-69)
Coach: Sylvia Hatchell
Coach Record: 636-241 at North Carolina, 908-321 overall

Any strengths column with North Carolina has to start with Sylvia Hatchell. Her presence alone has been a guiding force for many a North Carolina women’s basketball team through the years, and last year’s was no exception. North Carolina fans rejoiced as Hatchell won her 900th game overall last season. The Tar Heels also have a solid overall record at home, as they won 17 of 18 games played at Chapel Hill. North Carolina also outscores its opponents by nearly nine points per game. Xylina McDaniel, the team’s third-leading scorer (11.3 points per game) and second-leading rebounder (7.1) is also back for another season. McDaniel was also third in steals with 71.

This is where North Carolina could be in trouble. Three of the top five scorers from a year ago are gone, including top scorers Tierra Ruffin-Pratt and Waltiea Rolle. With them goes about 28 points per game, but the bigger stat with Rolle was the shot blocking. Rolle swatted away 89 of the team’s 197 blocks a year ago, and that will hurt North Carolina immensely as it tries to move on to a new era. North Carolina must better its assist-to-turnover ratio of last season, as it dished out 478 assists while it turned the ball over 722 times. How North Carolina won 29 games despite a bad assist-turnover ratio is not necessarily a miracle, but it is impressive.

Final Projection:
Many publications project North Carolina to be among the top teams in the Atlantic Coast Conference once again, and let’s face it; North Carolina carries prestige and power in women’s basketball circles, just like it does in the men’s arena. Three of the tallest players on the team are either true or redshirt freshmen, and that could help the Tar Heels recover quicker should these players find legs on the hardcourt. There are a couple bigger matchups against Tennessee and UCLA to start the season, but the non-conference schedule is largely devoid of super-talented teams. That will help the Tar Heels get a foothold before ACC play begins and it should help the team to another 25-win season.

Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA

Projected Starting Five:
Xylina McDaniel, Sophomore, Forward, 11.3 points and 7.1 rebounds per game
Brittany Rountree, Junior, Guard, led team with 50 3-point field goals
Megan Buckland, Sophomore, Guard, 5.7 points per game
Danielle Butts, Junior, Guard, 4.6 rebounds per game
Hillary Summers, Freshman, Forward, DNP last season

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 68.9 (45th in nation, 5th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 60.2 (133, 6)
Field-Goal Percentage: 39.7 (118, 7)
Field-Goal Defense: 35.8 (37, 3)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game:  4.3 (223, 7)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 29.6 (181, 6)
Free-Throw Percentage: 64.0 (293, 9)
Rebound Margin: 2.6 (99, 7)
Assists Per Game: 13.3 (124, 7)
Turnovers Per Game: 20.1 (307, 12)

Madness 2013 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#3 Diamond DeShields
#7 Allisha Gray
#16 Jessica Washington
#32 Stephanie Mavunga


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