for this game

Duke renews rivalry with North Carolina in need of a win

Feb 7, 2007 - 3:36 PM No. 5 North Carolina (20-3) at No. 16 Duke (18-5) 9:00 pm EST

DURHAM, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Mired in its second two-game skid of the season and in need of a conference win in the worst way, Duke will get no sympathy on Wednesday.

The 16th-ranked Blue Devils will try to right the ship in one of their biggest games of the season when No. 5 North Carolina visits Cameron Indoor Stadium in an Atlantic Coast Conference showdown.

Duke (18-5, 5-4 ACC) started conference play with a pair of losses - to Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech - before reeling off five straight victories.

The Blue Devils again have fallen on hard times with an overtime loss at Virginia and a 68-67 setback against Florida State on Sunday.

Sophomore point guard Greg Paulus scored a career-high 23 points for Duke against Florida State. He scored 12 points in the game's opening 12 minutes as the Blue Devils opened a 27-10 lead but could not keep the Seminoles from recording their first win in Cameron.

North Carolina (20-3, 6-2) will be motivated not only to knock off its hated rival but also to avoid a losing streak of its own. The Tar Heels are coming off an 83-79 loss at North Carolina State on Saturday.

The Tar Heels won in Durham last season and will look to get another big game from sophomore forward Tyler Hansbrough, who is averaging 18.9 points and 7.8 rebounds. In last year's meeting here, he scored 19 of his 27 points in the second half to lead North Carolina to an 83-76 victory over then-No. 1 Duke.

Duke has won 16 of the last 20 meetings with North Carolina but the Tar Heels still hold a 125-96 edge in the series.