CSN hoops tripleheader preview: Duke, UVA, American

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CSN hoops tripleheader preview: Duke, UVA, American

College basketball -- triple-header style -- comes to Comcast SportsNet on Saturday. Games involving locals American and Virginia sandwich a matchup between No. 2 Duke and CAA contender Delaware. Get your popcorn ready. Details below...

American (2-4) vs. St. Francis, Noon:  The Eagles, currently saddled with a three-game losing skid, return home for a clash with the Red Flash. American split its previous two home games including a 14-point loss to San Francisco despite 16 points from marathon man Daniel Munoz. The senior point guard is playing 38 minutes per contest, averaging 9.2 points and a team-best 3.8 assists.

No. 2 Duke (7-0) vs. Delaware (2-5), 2:00 p.m.: No need to sell the Blue Devils, considering the program's National Championship and Final Four pedigree, not to mention wins this season over then No. 2 Louisville, third-ranked Kentucky and No. 4 Ohio State. Center Miles Plumlee paces five double digit scorers with 19.9 points while yanking down 11.0 rebounds and sinking 65.3 percent of his field goal attempts. The Blue Hens murderers row schedule continues, having already lost this season to Kansas State, Pittsburgh, Temple and LaSalle. Expected to challenge George Mason and Drexel for the CAA regular season title, Delaware has its own double-double threat in Jamelle Hagins, who tallies 13.0 points and 13.4 rebounds. Guard and reigning CAA Player of the Week Devon Saddler leads the conference in scoring with 21.4 points.

Virginia (5-2) vs. Green Bay (3-3), 4: p.m.: Since losing to Delaware, the Cavaliers have won four straight including a 60-54 win at Wisconsin on Wednesday. Junior guard and leading scorer Joe Harris dropped a season-high 22 points on the Badgers while sophomore forward Darion Atkins (Landon) had a career-best 14. Virginia continues its battle against the cheeseheads, this time against coach Tony Bennett's Alma mater. During the winning run, the Cavaliers are scoring 71.5 points while allowing 51.2. No matter how long the streak lasts, Bennett's crew will be without sophomore guard Malcolm Brogdon as the team announced this week the sophomore guard will redshirt this season while recovering from foot surgery. Guard Keifer Sykes leads the Phoenix with 16.3 points.

Terps will finish season without center Michal Cekovsky

Terps will finish season without center Michal Cekovsky

Devastating news came out of College Park on Monday, as Maryland Terrapins coach Mark Turgeon announced junior center Michal Cekovsky will be out for the remainder of the season with a fractured ankle.

In the second half of the Terps’ 71-60 loss on the road to No. 11 Wisconsin, Cekovsky had the ball and was making a move toward the basket when he went down hard, clutching his left ankle.

Cekovsky’s season has been plagued with injuries, including missing preseason and the first four games of the regular season with a hamstring injury and then missed more than a month with a foot injury.

“I feel badly for Ceko as he has endured a number of injuries throughout the season,” Turgeon said. “It felt like he was really starting to turn the corner and his best basketball was ahead of him. We anticipate a full recovery for next season and we will be there to support him through the rehabilitation process.”

In just 17 games this season, Cekovsky averaged 7.6 points per game and 13.2 minutes, while shooting 67.1 percent from the field.

The Terps next game is against Minnesota at the XFINITY Center in College Park at 8:30 p.m.

MORE TERPS: Maryland continues to slide down the AP Top 25 poll

Justin Jackson, North Carolina too much for Virginia

Justin Jackson, North Carolina too much for Virginia

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) -- Justin Jackson scored 20 points to help No. 10 North Carolina beat No. 14 Virginia 65-41 on Saturday night, keeping the Tar Heels alone in first in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Kennedy Meeks had all of his 13 points and seven rebounds after halftime for the Tar Heels (23-5, 11-3 Atlantic Coast Conference). They shot 47 percent and led by double figures nearly all night against the ice-cold Cavaliers.

UNC led 34-22 at halftime, never let Virginia closer than nine then ran off 10 straight points to take a 25-point lead and send the Cavaliers to their first three-game skid in a single season in six years.

Marial Shayok scored 13 points to lead Virginia (18-8, 8-6), who went 10 minutes without a basket at one point during the second half and missed its first 17 3-pointers for the game as the Tar Heels turned it into a rout.

Virginia shot 28 percent for the game and finished at 2 for 20 from 3-point range to go with a season-low point output, with every missed shot becoming magnified as the Tar Heels stayed in attack mode.

It was also was the second-lowest point total by an opponent in UNC's Smith Center, just a basket better than Clemson's 39 points here in 1995.

UNC finished with a 44-26 rebounding advantage, with much of that edge coming after halftime behind Meeks.

BIG PICTURE

Virginia: The Cavaliers offered up a worst-case scenario Saturday night. If Virginia's defense can't rattle an opponent, the Cavaliers' limited offensive punch gives them little margin for error.

UNC: This was one of several tough games for UNC coming down the regular-season stretch. Winning this rematch of last year's ACC Tournament championship game by a lopsided margin has to be a boost to an already confident team.

UP NEXT

Virginia: The Cavaliers return home Monday night to host Miami.

UNC: The Tar Heels have another big home game, hosting No. 8 Louisville on Wednesday night.