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Tar Heels powered by one-two punch

It is inevitable that, as much as a university's residential service tries to match up first-year students with each other, there will be roommates who by the end of the first semester hate each other. Others are more fortunate and bond together in their tiny quarters over freshmen meal plans, boring classes and relationship woes.

  

And then, of course, there are those like Camille Little and Ivory Latta who, on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill, have become adjusted to college life together starting for the No. 15 women's basketball team in the country.

  

Before slipping on their baby blue uniforms, Little, who hails from Winston-Salem, N.C., and Latta, from McConnells, S.C., were very familiar with each other from high school hoops. Both played AAU basketball for Team Carolina, which won four consecutive State Championships during their high school years. By their senior year in high school, the two were winning many of the same national accolades, including playing in both the WBCA High School All-America game and the McDonald's All-American Game.

  

In the latter, Little and Latta started together as a prelude to their current UNC roles. In the WBCA game, Latta was named MVP, scoring 17 points and handing out six assists. On the other team, Little came off the bench to score 10 points and grab three rebounds.

  

When it finally came time to think about living arrangements in Chapel Hill, the decision was a no-brainer for the two basketball stars.

  

"We knew each other from playing AAU basketball, so we picked [to room together]," Latta said.

  

Besides basketball, the two players had another high school court in common--that of prom and homecoming royalty.

  

For Latta, this honor came when she was named Homecoming Queen her senior year. Little waited a little longer, until the spring, when she was named Prom Queen for Carver High School. For Little, this honor was a great supplement to her basketball accolades.

  

"Sometimes you get upset because you are in season like during Homecoming [and do not get to participate]," Little said. "I was really glad I got this."

  

At the beginning of the season, both players were honored just to wear their North Carolina uniforms. Latta grew up watching UNC basketball with her four older brothers, while Little always dreamed of playing college ball in the state where she grew up. However, with Little leading the team in rebounds for twelve games thus far and Little and Latta each pacing the team in scoring in nine games this season, the players have fit well into their roles as team leaders.

  

"They're both outstanding players, and they're going to make us a better team," head coach Sylvia Hatchell said. "I don't know if we've ever had a player who talks as much on the floor as Ivory does. She shows great leadership and plays with so much heart... Camille will help us out at the four position. She has looked outstanding there."

When not starting for one of the best women's teams in the country, the roommates are enjoying their first year as normal college students, including cheering on North Carolina's men's basketball team.

  

"I watch [Raymond] Felton a lot and try to do what he does," Latta said.

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