The Charlotte 49ers women's basketball team fell to the North Carolina Tar Heels 89-33 on Sunday, Nov. 14. The momentum from the Richmond win didn't carry over as the team had many struggles throughout the contest.
It was an all-out Tar Heel blitz from the start as they scored nine unanswered points until Jada McMillian got the 49ers on the board almost mid-way through the first quarter. The Tar Heels would extend their lead to 21-2 before the 49ers scored again. The Tar Heels led 27-3 at the end of the first quarter. UNC guard Alyssa Utsby led in scoring.
The second quarter was a lot of the same as the Tar Heels would continue to assert their will on the 49ers. The halftime advantage for the Tar Heels would be 35 points as the score was 46-11.
The 49ers seemed to get their offense going a little better in the second half, but nothing would stop the Tar Heels as they would eventually cruise to a 56 point victory. The outcome wasn't what the 49er faithful hoped for, as just a season ago, these two teams played a tightly contested contest in Chapel Hill.
"North Carolina is a really good team," said Head Coach Cara Consuegra. "It doesn't help when you played probably your worst against a very good team."
Fifth-year forward KeKe McKinney led the 49ers in scoring with eight points and four rebounds in the contest.
Star 49er players Octavia Jett-Wilson and Jada McMillian played out of character, making some uncharacteristic mistakes. North Carolina had them out of sorts early by ramping up their defensive presence. Consuegra felt that her team could have played better but will take lessons learned from the game into the rest of the season.
"I am disappointed in our performance," said Consuegra. "But, the season is a marathon, not a sprint. We are not just going to fold and hang our heads. We are a good team, and we know we are a good team, and we just obviously have to get better."
Player of the game:
Alyssa Utsby, North Carolina: Utsby was all over the place on the court. She totaled 18 points, 11 rebounds and five assists on the game. She shot a very efficient 8-11 from the field and only committed one turnover.
She was a player to watch coming into this game, and she proved worthy of that distinction as she was a problem for the 49er defense all game long.
The 49ers travel to Winston Salem on Thursday, Nov. 18, to take on the Wake Forrest Demon Deacons. The tipoff will be at 7 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on ESPN3. Consuegra is confident that her team can bounce back in Thursday's game.
"I know what we are capable of, and I know it's much better than we did tonight, and we will keep working hard to get to that point," Consuegra said.