CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – The 2019-20 season for the Virginia Cavaliers looked as if it would be a rebuilding year.While there were early defeats in conference play to Boston College, Syracuse, and NC State, the Cavaliers have rattled off 8 straight wins to close the season, and earn the #2 seed in the ACC Tournament in Greensboro. The latest of these victories coming at home in the John Paul Jones Arena versus number #10 Louisville, by the score of 57-54.
The game started off back and forth to begin the first half, but with two minutes left, the Cavs’ pulled away to lead by 7 at the break. UVA continued to dominate the early portion of the second half, extending their lead up to 14 at one point. Louisville would not go away East and with 5:11 left in the game, Darius Perry nailed a three pointer to tie it between the two sides. From that point though, the Cavaliers went on a 6-0 run, including a huge shot by Kihei Clark, a phrase we’ve heard often this year. Louisville’s Samuel Williamson cashed a three with four seconds remaining but it was not enough as the Cavaliers won by 3.
UVA was led by their emerging big three of Clark who lead with 18/5/5, Mamadi Diakite who followed with 17/8 and 2 blocks, and finally big man Jay Huff who contributed 11/5 as well as two blocks. The Cards’ were led by top scorer Jordan Nwora with 18 and 11 rebounds, forward Steven Enoch and sharpshooter Ryan McMahon who combined for 20 points.
After the game, Virginia Coach Tony Bennett talked about turnaround his team through this season: “I think we’ve improved, we were really close when we were losing, and we’re still really close when we’re winning, you know we’ve just improved a little bit.”
As mentioned earlier, due to this senior night win, the Cavs’ will get the 2 seed in Greensboro and will play Boston College or Notre Dame. The Cards’ will get the 3 seed and have to play Syracuse, UNC, or Virginia Tech.
Bracketology Effect: Virginia remains the 7 seed in the East Region, projected to face the Florida Gators. The Cardinals move from the 3 in the Midwest to the 4 in the East, they are currently projected to take on Vermont In the first round.
Betting Effect: Covered: UVA -2, Under 116