Teasley, Brown star in streak

With a victory over Florida State on Monday, the North Carolina Lady Tar Heels have won three straight. There has been a simple reason for the Heels' run – the play of Nikki Teasley and Coretta Brown.

The turning point of what was a three-game losing streak came on January 24 in Cameron Indoor Stadium against archrival Duke. Carolina was embarrassed by the then No. 5-ranked Blue Devils, 102-82. Changes had to be made, and UNC head coach Sylvia Hatchell was willing to make them to get her team to produce on the court.

"I felt like we need more experience at the point," Hatchell said. "We needed more experience out top. "I felt like the changes we made helped us out."

Teasley, a senior six-foot guard from Washington, D.C., was moved to point guard for the Virginia game after playing much of the season in an off-guard spot. The mood of Carolina changed from that moment. Teasley's leadership bringing the ball up court and running the offense resulted in the Lady Heels shooting a season high, at the time, 54.4 percent from the field against Virginia. The winning and sharp shooting did not stop after the Virginia game. It continued on into the core of the Heels ACC season with wins over Maryland and Florida State by 11 and 30 points, respectively.

Teasley herself dropped 10, 12 and 22 points including dishing out six, seven and nine assists in the Heels' three games since her newfound role.

Teasley was not the only one who benefited from Hatchell's new system with Teasley at the point. The Heels' new approach allowed for junior guard Coretta Brown to roam free behind the arc. Brown, who is close to becoming Carolina's all-time leading three-point shooter at 35.8 percent, hit 4-of-6 from three-point land against Virginia, 3-of-6 against the Maryland Terrapins and 4-of-9 against Florida State.

"We are the two leaders," Teasley said. " [Coretta and I] feed off each other. It makes it easier for me to pass it to someone who can finish."

Since that final buzzer of the Duke game, Carolina's guard tandem have come out on fire, shooting 17-for-35 from behind the three-point arc. The duo has also combined for 103 total points and 32 assists in the stretch of wins.

Teasley and Brown are looking towards the end of the regular season with big games at N.C. State on February 10, at Virginia on February 21 and at Duke on February 24.

"We were tired of losing. It wasn't Carolina basketball," Teasley said. "It's my last year at Carolina – I don't want to lose."

Hatchell said, when asked on what has sparked the three-game run, "Our intensity has been better. We've been doing things in practice to make us better. We may have come up with a secret weapon."

Hatchell would not expound on what exactly the secret weapon is, but regardless, the team's new approach, with Teasley running the show and Brown on the wing shooting, has worked well.

The on-the-court results speak for themselves.

The Heels look to continue their winning ways tonight against a non-conference foe, Villanova, at 7 p.m. at Carmichael Auditorium. The Heels will then finish out the season with five conference games.

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