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ATL Bound: Tar Heel Men Take On Yellow Jackets In Midweek Test

By Matt Oakes Posted January 28, 2014 at 4:58 pm

ATLANTA– The 12-7 Carolina men’s basketball team, 2-4 in the ACC, will take on 11-9 Georgia Tech, 2-5 in conference, Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in Atlanta.

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After a dominating performance against Clemson on Sunday, the Tar Heels will need to maintain their intensity on the road against the Yellow Jackets, who are coming off an 80-78 overtime loss at N.C.State.

Kennedy Meeks scored 11 points and recorded a team-high eight rebounds to go along with three blocks in the Clemson victory.

Head Coach Roy Williams says despite needing to shed a few more pounds, the freshman is beginning to come into his own on the floor.

“There is no magic weight, but I’d like for him to be lower so he can be more explosive. He didn’t handle it quite as well inside, five out of nine, and every one of his shots were three inches away from the basket. He is doing some good things. He’s working harder defensively, and he is the best passer out of all of them,” Coach Williams says.

James Michael McAdoo put up a team-leading 22 points on Sunday. The junior says he was really enjoying himself in the SmithCenter and is trying to appreciate all the minutes he has playing in a Carolina uniform.

“When I’m out there, I try not to let anything hold me back. Especially when the game is going well, you try to enjoy those moments. You don’t know when the next time you are going to get one,” McAdoo says.

Wednesday’s game figures to be a physical one. Georgia Tech sophomore Robert Carter, Jr. is averaging 9.3 rebounds per game while senior Daniel Miller is second in the ACC in blocked shots.

Senior Leslie McDonald says the Tar Heels need to be up to the challenge and play an attacking style.

“Mac [McAdoo] diving on the floor for extra possession. You see Desmond [Hubert] attacking the board and tapping the ball out for extra possessions. That’s what we need to have,” McDonald says.

McDonald has scored in double figures for three straight games. He says he feels he is being more patient with his shot.

“That’s one thing I’ve worked on a lot – just feeling the flow of the game, letting the game come to me and just playing my game,” McDonald says.

Coach Williams says this UNC squad has a chance to make a run if it chooses to play with the urgency and effort it takes to succeed. He points out the Tar Heels have no room for error this season.

“If they do that every game it will help us. In this league, nothing is a given. […] We’ve got to be able to do that every night. We have no chance if we don’t do that. I’ve had some teams that were very gifted that could win without their best effort, but this is a team that really needs to have that maximum effort,” Coach Williams says.

UNC leads the all-time series against Georgia Tech 63-24, but the two teams have split the last 20 meetings since the 2001-02 season.

Your Tar Heels-Yellow Jackets game day coverage begins on WCHL, 97.9 FM at 5:30 p.m. with Countdown to Tipoff and the game will be nationally televised on ESPN2 at 7 p.m..

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