Hokies, Tar Heels set for quarterfinals at ACC Tournament

Third-seeded Tech faces sixth-seeded UNC at 8:30 p.m. Thursday on ESPN

BLACKSBURG – As the No. 3 seed in the New York Life ACC Tournament, No. 22/21 Virginia Tech will play against sixth-seeded North Carolina on Thursday at 8:30 p.m. ET inside Greensboro Coliseum in the quarterfinals on ESPN.


The Hokies (15-5, 9-4 ACC) and Tar Heels (17-9, 10-6 ACC) will meet for the first time this season, following a cancellation back on Feb. 16. This game is actually a rematch of the ACC Tournament last year, a 78-56 UNC win in the first round.

North Carolina leads the series 69-15 and is 16-2 on a neutral court against Tech.


The Hokies, whose first season in the ACC was the 2004-05 academic year, are 10-16 in the ACC Tournament. The No. 3 seed to their name is tied for their highest ever seeding in the ACC Tournament, tying the 2006-07 season. The double bye Tech earned marked the first time its ever gotten it since the ACC expanded to 15 teams (2014 ACC Tournament).


Tech coach Mike Young is 2-3 all-time against UNC and coach Roy Williams, earning the first W in 2017 at UNC, 79-75, when he was at Wofford, and then again last January, a double-overtime thriller in Blacksburg.


The matchup will be broadcast on ESPN, with Dan Shulman (play-by-play), Jay Bilas (analyst) and Allison Williams (reporter) on the call, while Jon Laaser (play-by-play) and Mike Burnop (analyst) will broadcast on Virginia Tech Sports Network.


Turning in its biggest ACC win in school history, Tech cruised to a 38-point win over Wake Forest (6-13, 3-13) on Senior Day Feb. 27, 84-46. Dishing out 19 assists as a team, Tech was clicking on offense by shooting 53.4 percent from the field and made 13 triples.


Hitting a career-high five 3-pointers against Wake Forest, Keve Aluma finished with a game-high 23 points. He went 9 of 11 for the field to shoot 81.8 percent and also had eight rebounds, two blocks and assist and a steal.

Scoring in double figures for the 11th time this season and third straight game, Nahiem Alleyne tallied 13 points versus Wake. The sophomore guard made three 3-pointers and also had five rebounds and tied his career high for assists with five.


•  North Carolina is coming off a 42-point victory over 11th-seeded Notre Dame (11-15, 7-11) in the second round of the ACC Tournament, winning 101-59 on Wednesday night at Greensboro Coliseum behind Armando Bacot’s team-high 20 points and 13 rebounds.

• Williams enters his 18th season as the head coach in Chapel Hill, following his 15-year stint as the head coach at Kansas, where he racked up over 400 victories. At UNC, Williams has led his alma mater to three national championships, with the most recent in 2017.

• Carolina is led by Armando Bacot, who averages a team-high 20.0 points and 7.8 rebounds, and Caleb Love, who leads the team in assists per game (3.9) and is tied for second on the team in points (10.6).

• Known for their prowess on the glass, the Heels lead the country in rebound margin (11.1) and offensive rebounds per game (15.7). They also get to the foul line pretty regularly, ranking 21st and first in the ACC in free-throw attempts (562).