Sunday, January 8, 2012

ACC, CAA teams in action on huge Sunday slate

Sunday's games

Florida State (9-7, 1-1 ACC) at Virginia Tech (6-9, 2-0), 2 p.m.
After solid wins at Clemson and Boston College, the Hokies step up in class against the talented Seminoles. FSU's size and skill in the frontcourt with 6-4 All-ACC performer Cierra Bravard and 6-3 sophomore Natasha Howard will be particularly challenging. Playing in the cozy confines of Cassell Coliseum with three straight wins under their belt, the Hokies should be feeling better about themselves than they have all season. But we're not crazy about this matchup. Florida State 70, Virginia Tech 56

Virginia (12-4, 0-2 ACC) at Clemson (4-9, 0-2), 2 p.m.
The Cavaliers put up a solid effort at Duke and did a lot of good things against North Carolina but have only an 0-2 conference record to show for it. So they can't let this one get away. The Tigers have lost four straight and haven't scored more than 47 points in any of their last three. Can't see their offense getting well today against the stingy Virginia defense. Virginia 65, Clemson 48

James Madison (10-3, 1-1 CAA) at Georgia State (6-7, 0-2), 2 p.m.
Panthers coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener was so frustrated by her team's effort in Wednesday's loss at Old Dominion she benched her starters for virtually the entire second half. Georgia State practices surely haven't been much fun the past few days, and odds are the Panthers will have fire coming out of their eyes by tipoff. If the Dukes match Georgia State's intensity, they should fine. But JMU should be approaching this game expecting to receive the Panthers' most inspired effort of the year. JMU 62, Georgia State 52

Old Dominion (4-10, 1-1 CAA) at Northeastern (2-11, 0-2), 2 p.m.
The Lady Monarchs have won three of their past five games will look to build on Wednesday's encouraging performance at both ends of the court in Wednesday's victory over Georgia State. The Huskies may not be as woeful as their record implies, though, as their two CAA losses were competitive 7-point setbacks on the road at VCU and UNC Wilmington. The last time ODU visited Northeastern's Solomon Court, on Jan. 7, 2010, the Huskies won in triple-overtime 100-94. Tia Lewis had 13 points and 9 rebounds in 45 minutes; Jo Guilford and Jackie Cook also took part in the contest. Lewis is coming off a 30-point, 10-rebound tour-de-force against Georgia State. ODU 59, Northeastern 54

UNC Wilmington (8-5, 1-1) at VCU (8-5, 1-1), 2 p.m.
The Rams were humbled in a 63-41 loss at JMU Thursday, and after the game the Dukes implied that the Rams backed down when JMU got into them. Whether that's true or not, the mere suggestion that they got out-toughed just gives the Rams one more reason to lay everything on the line today. They'll likely need that kind of effort against a Seahawks club that has won three straight and six of their past seven. VCU 72, UNCW 68

No. 21 Delaware (11-1, 2-0 CAA) at George Mason (7-6, 1-1), 2 p.m.
Elena Delle Donne gets most of the headlines, and one look at her numbers tells you she deserves every one of them. But what makes Delaware an elite team is the improved strength and depth of the players around her. Used to be you could let Delle Donne get hers and take your chances with everyone else. Go in with that mentality now and you may lose by 30. The Patriots have played much better at home (5-2), so if they have a major upset in them this is the place they'd pull it off. But they have virtually no margin for error. Delaware 70, George Mason 52

Hofstra (10-3, 2-0 CAA) at William and Mary (8-5, 1-1), 2 p.m.
Should be a fun game to watch as both teams boast plenty of offensive firepower. Tribe forward Emily Correal, who has quietly emerged as one of the conference's best players, is averaging 19.7 points and 12.7 rebounds over her last three games. She'll likely need another performance in that range, and plenty of help, to take down a Hofstra team that has played at a Top-25 level for much of the season. Hofstra 80, William and Mary 75

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