Another day, another top-25 battle for the UNC women's basketball program

Courtney Banghart and the UNC women's basketball program are no strangers to top-25 battles, as their next game is against another highly-ranked foe.

North Carolina v Notre Dame
North Carolina v Notre Dame / Michael Hickey/GettyImages
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Winners of five straight games, Courtney Banghart and the UNC women's basketball program hit the road for another big test on Thursday night.

ACCNX. 12-4. . 6:00 PM EST. 11-4. 441. Thursday, January 11. UNC FSU WBB. 435

For the sixth time this season, the Tar Heels will face a top-25 ranked team as they travel to take on the Florida State Seminoles in another big-time ACC matchup.

Similar to the UNC women's basketball program, Florida State has played a grueling schedule thus far as well. Three of the four losses the Seminoles have suffered came against teams ranked among the top four teams in the country, as they've certainly been battle tested so far during the 2023-2024 season.

This game should be a very fun one to watch, as the Seminoles high-powered offense will look to get the best of the Tar Heels elite defense.

How will this one play out?

Key to Victory for North Carolina

Florida State has shot the ball well this season, knocking down 43.2% of their shot attempts. They are 8-0 when they shoot above that mark this season, as they also are 12-4 while scoring more than 56 points per game.

The game plan for the Tar Heels has to be emphasized on the defensive side of the ball, as the goal to make life difficult for the Seminoles' offensive attack has to be at the forefront of the game plan.

Florida State has plenty of scoring options to work with, especially Ta'Niya Latson, who comes in averaging 20.9 points per game. Look for the Tar Heels to throw different defensive looks at Latson while also focusing on not allowing Florida State to get into a rhythm offensively.

Something to Watch For

Although she still leads the UNC women's basketball program in scoring, it's been a rough go for guard Deja Kelly of late.

The senior guard has failed to score more than 10 points in each of the Tar Heels last two games, as this team needs her to get into a groove as conference play heats up.

Of course, Kelly draws a lot of attention, and rightfully so, but can she find a way to improve her numbers that have taken a dip from what we've seen from her in the past?

It's simple: if the UNC women's basketball program has aspirations of going deep into the NCAA Tournament, they are going to need Deja Kelly at the top of her game.

Projected Starters

No. 1 Alyssa Ustby (Sr. 6-1) 12.7 ppg, 9.5 rpg, 3.7 apg
No. 2 Paulina Paris (So. 5-9) 5.8 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 1.5 apg
No. 5 Maria Gakdeng (Jr. 6-3) 10.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 0.7 apg
No. 20 Lexi Donarski (Gr. 6-0) 11.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 1.1 apg
No. 25 Deja Kelly (Sr. 5-8) 14.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.9 apg