Virginia Preview

Virginia enters the Smith Center on Saturday coming off of two big conference losses -- and badly in need of a win. The Tar Heels will try to fend off the No. 7-ranked Cavs and end their own rough two-game skid. Tipoff is at noon and the game will be televised by ESPN.

Virginia (9-2, 0-2) at North Carolina (5-7, 1-2)
Dean Smith Center, Chapel Hill (N.C.)
12:00 p.m.
Radio: (Listen Live)

Game Previews:
Richmond T-D -- Sneaker is on other foot for Tar Heels basketball
Richmond T-D -- Cavs doing version of Rocky Flop?
TheSabre -- Rock Bottom?
DTH -- The Lowdown
UVa Official Site -- Game Notes

Season to Date: The Cavs won their first nine games, including wins over Auburn and Georgetown, reaching No. 4 in the rankings. However, the results of their last two games have created a bit of a panic in Charlottesville. UVa lost its first two ACC contests, home against N.C. State and at Clemson, as the local Times Dispatch is already drawing comparisons to the collapse of last season's Tennessee squad. In their two losses, the Cavs have suffered from the absence of a true point guard. Leading scorer Roger Mason has been forced to run the point, as Majestic Mapp sits out his second-straight season due to injury. (2001-2002 Schedule w/Results)

Probable Starting Lineup:
Roger Mason, Jr. (6-5, Jr., G) 18.4 pts, 5.5 ast
Adam Hall (6-5, Sr., F/G) 9.9 pts, 5.5 reb
Chris Williams (6-7, Sr., F) 14.4 pts, 6.4 reb
J.C. Mathis (6-8, So., F) 5.5 pts, 4.2 reb
Travis Watson (6-8, Jr., F/C) 13.0 pts, 10.4 reb

Key Reserves:
Elton Brown (6-9, Fr., F) 8.1 pts, 3.3 reb
Jermaine Harper (6-3, Fr., G) 4.5 pts
Keith Jenifer (6-3, Fr., G) 2.3 pts, 2.0 ast
Jason Clark (6-8, Fr., F) 3.4 pts, 3.2 reb

Team Roster
Season Stats

Last Season: The Tar Heels split the season series with Virginia last year. UNC beat the Cavs at the Smith Center, 88-81, on Jan. 24, but were routed a month later in Charlottesville, 86-66. Joseph Forte averaged 30.5 points for the Heels in the two contests, while Brendan Haywood posted 14.5 points and 8.5 boards. For the Cavs, Travis Watson had 15.0 points and 10.0 rebounds, Roger Mason put up 17.5 points and Donald Hand averaged 7.5 assists.

Photo Gallery:

Roger Mason, Jr.

Travis Watson

Chris Williams

Head coach Pete Gillen

(AP photos by Nick Wass)

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