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Dec. 27, 1999

Dec. 22, 1999

Virginia (7-3) vs. Belmont
December 28, 1999, 7:30 p.m.
University Hall
Charlottesville, Va.

The Series vs. Belmont
Virginia meets Belmont for the first time ever on December 28 at University Hall. The Bruins, who are in their third year of Division I play, are one of just six Division I Independents. Belmont posted a 14-13 record in its second year of Division I competition in 1998-99.

UVa’s contest against the Bruins marks the first team from the state of Tennessee that Virginia has played since the 1995-96 season. In 1995-96, the Cavaliers played both Tennessee-Martin (an 84-65 win) and Vanderbilt (a 61-48 loss).

Virginia has not played any of the other five current Division I Independents either. Those schools are Albany, Centenary, Stony Brook, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Texas-Pan American.

Non-Conference Teams at University Hall
Virginia is 177-27 (.868) all-time in U-Hall against non-conference opponents since the building opened for the 1965-66 season.The Cavaliers have won 59 of their last 67 home games against non-conference opponents dating back to the 1989-90 season (basically this decade).

Opponents Shoot Blanks at University Hall
Virginia is 36-7 against non-conference opponents at University Hall over the last seven seasons. Among the reasons the Cavaliers have been so successful in non-conference games is their ability to out-shoot and out-rebound the other team.

In their wins, the Cavaliers have shot 46.8 percent from the field compared to 36.9 percent for the opposition. Virginia also out-rebounds the other team by 10 rebounds per game (47.1/g to 36.1/g).In contrast, the tables are turned in Virginia’s home losses. The opponents shoot much better than Virginia (43.2 percent vs. 37.2 percent) and out-rebound the Cavaliers by a wide margin (44.7/g to 32.4/g).

Three of the seven-highest shooting percentages by non-conference opponents on Virginia’s home floor the last seven seasons have come in Virginia losses. Liberty shot 50.0 percent in the 1997-98 season and stunned UVa 69-64. Ohio shot 47.4 percent in a 94-83 win during the 1994-95 season, while Connecticut shot 46.3 percent in winning the 1993-94 season opener.

Only 15 of the last 43 non-conference opponents to come to University Hall have managed to make more than 40 percent of their field goal attempts. Loyola (Dec. 8) was the last team to shoot over 40 percent as it connected on 24 of 51 attempts from the floor (47.1 percent) in a 98-67 loss to the Cavaliers.

End of the Road and Welcome Home
Virginia’s game at Richmond on December 21 marked the end of a stretch that included seven of eight games away from the friendly confines of University Hall. The Belmont game is the first of four consecutive Cavalier contests in a 12-day stretch at U-Hall. In addition to Belmont, UVa hosts Dartmouth (Jan. 2), Duke (Jan. 5) and Georgia Tech (Jan. 8).

After defeating VMI 98-57 on November 21, UVa went 17 days before playing Loyola (Dec. 8) in its next home game. The Cavaliers home contest against Belmont marks only their second home game in 37 days.

During the recent eight-game stretch, Virginia compiled a 4-3 record on the road and won its only home game.

Looking For Four Wins in a Row
The Virginia men’s basketball team has won its last three games and the Cavaliers will be looking for their fourth consecutive victory when they host Belmont on December 28. UVa hasn’t won four consecutive gamessince early in the 1997-98 season. Virginia’s last four-game winning streak consisted of victories over William & Mary (59-45, 11/19/97 at University Hall), George Mason (60-45, 11/22/97 at University Hall), Delaware (64-57, 11/25/97 at Delaware) and Appalachian State (62-54,12/2/97 at University Hall).

Changes in Virginia’s Starting Lineup
Virginia head coach Pete Gillen has used seven different starting lineups and has had a total of 10 different players start in the first 10 games of the Cavaliers’ 1999-2000 season. Virginia is 5-2 in games this season with new starting lineups. Only one player, sophomore Adam Hall, has started all 10 games.

The Cavaliers opened the season with junior Stephane Dondon and sophomore Chris Williams at forward, and junior Colin Ducharme at center. Junior Donald Hand and Hall started in the backcourt. In the second game, a 98-57 triumph over VMI, Gillen started freshman Travis Watson at center instead of Ducharme. With the same starting lineup in the third game of the season against South Carolina, the Cavaliers suffered a 73-71 setback.

Gillen changed his starting lineup for the third time against Providence and it resulted in an 80-64 victory. Hall, Williams and Watson remained in the starting lineup, but junior guard Keith Friel and freshman guard Majestic Mapp started in place of Hand and Dondon. The Cavaliers used their fourth different starting combination against Arizona State (Hall, Williams, Watson, Mapp and Hand) and came away with a 70-64 victory.

In a 74-62 loss at Minnesota in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on November 30, Virginia started senior Willie Dersch, Ducharme, Hall, Hand and Watson. UVa started its sixth different lineup against St. John’s (Dec. 4) when freshman Roger Mason, Hall, Hand, Watson and Williams were in the starting lineup.

Gillen used his seventh different starting lineup in a 98-67 win over Loyola (Dec. 8). Dersch and Williams started at forward with Watson at center. At the two guard positions, Hand and Hall received the starting nod. That lineup has started Virginia’s last three games.

Hall Breaks Out of Scoring Slump
After four consecutive games without scoring in double figures, sophomore guard Adam Hall has broken out of his scoring slump with three consecutive double figure outings. In a 98-67 win over Loyola (Dec. 8), Hall scored all of his team-high 18 points in the first half. Against Hampton (Dec. 10), Hall tallied 15 points in a 102-56 UVa win. He scored a game-high 23 points in Virginia’s 69-65 win at Richmond on December 21. The 23 point total is his highest of the season.

In the last three games, Hall has shot an impressive 71.9 percent from the field as he has made 23 of 32 attempts. He has also made six of his last 10 three-point attempts after starting the season one for 11 (9.1 percent).

On the season, Hall is shooting 58.1 percent (43-74) from the field, but is struggling at the free throw line having made 17 of 38 attempts (44.7 percent).

Mason’s First Three-Pointer a Big One
Freshman guard Roger Mason’s first three-point field goal for Virginia couldn’t have come at a better time. Mason’s first three-point field goal of his collegiate career came with 3:21 remaining to play in the Cavaliers’ game at the University of Richmond on December 21 and broke a59-59 tie. The three-pointer gave UVa a lead it would not surrender in the game’s closing moments as Virginia defeated the Spiders 69-65. It was the only three-point attempt of the game for Mason, who missed his first 10 three-point attempts this season.

Double-Double for Hand
Junior guard Donald Hand registered his first double-double of the season and the third of his career against Hampton (Dec. 10) with 15 points and 11 assists. Hand’s 11 assists established a new career high. His former career high was nine assists against Duke (Jan. 24, 1998). It is Hand’s first double-double in points and assists. His first two double-doubles came last season against Wake Forest (Feb. 3) – 25 points, 11 rebounds, and Georgia Tech (Feb. 25) – 28 points, 13 rebounds.

Cavaliers’ Defense Forcing Turnovers
The Virginia defense is forcing an average of just over 21 turnovers a game through the first 10 games of the 1999-2000 season. UVa’s opponents have turned the ball over 212 times in the first 10 games of the season.

School Record Pace for Steals
The Cavaliers are averaging 10.5 steals per game in the 1999-2000 season and at that pace, UVa would set a school record for steals. Last year, Virginia posted an all-time best 257 steals for an average of 8.6 per game. At their current rate, the Cavaliers would conclude the season with a school record 315 steals.

On four different occasions this season, Virginia has registered 15 steals in a game, which ties for 11th place on UVa’s single game steals list.

Donald Hand and Travis Watson Lead the Way
Junior guard Donald Hand led the Cavaliers in scoring last season (17.1 ppg.) and is leading the team in scoring through the first 10 games of the 1999-2000 season (13.9 ppg.). He is also the team leader in assists (4.8 per game). Hand has led the team in scoring in three games and has one double-double to his credit. Freshman forward/ center Travis Watson is third on the team in scoring (12.1 ppg.) and is the team’s leading rebounder (9.3 rpg.).

Watson has led the team in scoring twice and in rebounding eight times, including the last five contests. He has three double-doubles in points and rebounds.

Hare Sets Career High
Junior guard Josh Hare scored a career-high 10 points in the Cavaliers’ 102-56 win over Hampton (Dec. 10). He made four of eight attempts from the floor (1-4 on three-pointers) and one of two free throws. The field goals attempted and made are career bests as well. He also added four rebounds.

Warming Up From Long Range
In its last three games Virginia has heated up from three-point range, as it has made 23 three-point field goals in 63 attempts for 36.5 percent. The percentage of three-pointers made isn’t great, but considering what the Cavaliers were shooting beyond the arc in the first seven games (26.6 percent – 33-124), it is significant. In the first seven games, UVa made 4.7 threes per game, compared to 7.7 per outing in the last three contests.

Virginia made a season-high 11 three-point field goals against Loyola (Dec. 8) with seven different players accounting for the threes. The 11 three-pointers are the 11th highest total in school history. (The Cavaliers made 11 three-pointers in a game eight other times.)

Freshmen Making Significant Contribution
Three freshmen are playing significant minutes for Virginia in the early part of the 1999-2000 season. Forward/center Travis Watson, and guards Majestic Mapp and Roger Mason have each seen action in all 10 of Virginia’s games.

Watson has started nine games for the Cavaliers and is the team’s leading rebounder (9.3 rpg.) and third leading scorer (12.1 ppg.). He also leads the team in blocked shots (nine), and is second on the team in steals (17) and field goal percentage (57.3 percent, 47-82). Watson is averaging 26.0 minutes of playing time a game.

Mapp is averaging 5.6 points and 0.7 rebound a game while playing 17.6 minutes per contest. He has started two games and is shooting a team-high 45.0 percent (9-20) from three-point range. Mapp has 23 assists and 22 turnovers, and also has 10 steals.

Mason is averaging 6.6 points and 2.2 rebounds a game. He is averaging 16.9 minutes of playing time a game and has 12 steals and nine assists.

Ten Different Double Figure Scorers
In the first 10 games of the 1999-2000 season, the Cavaliers have had 10 different players score in double figures in a game. Virginia had only seven players reach double figures in scoring last season. Junior guard Josh Hare became the 10th Cavalier to score in double figures in the 1999-2000 season when he tallied 10 points against Hampton (Dec. 10). The other double figure scorers this season are: (only first double digit performance is listed) sophomore guard Adam Hall (12 vs. VMI), junior guard Donald Hand (18 vs. Elon), freshman guard Majestic Mapp (10 vs. Elon), freshman guard Roger Mason (10 vs. Elon), freshman forward/center Travis Watson (15 vs. Elon), sophomore forward Chris Williams (16 vs. Elon), junior guard Keith Friel (14 vs. South Carolina), junior center Colin Ducharme (10 vs. South Carolina), and senior forward Willie Dersch (10 vs. Arizona State).

Head Coach Pete Gillen
Pete Gillen is in his 15th season as a collegiate head coach and sports a 295-147 record for a .667 winning percentage. Gillen is in his second year as head coach at Virginia. His two Virginia teams have compiled an overall record of 21-19. Gillen has led his teams to postseason play 11 times (eight NCAA, three NIT). He has been selected as the conference Coach of the Year five times – all while coaching Xavier (Midwestern Collegiate Conference).

He successfully began his coaching career at Virginia with an 86-70 win over Virginia Commonwealth on November 13, 1998.

Not so ‘Free’ Throws
After leading the ACC in free throw percentage (.734) for the first time since 1979 last season, the Cavaliers have struggled from the free throw line in the early portion of the 1999-2000 campaign.

Through the first 10 games of the season, UVa has shot 65.5 percent (180-275) from the free throw line. The Cavaliers have shot over 65 percent from the charity stripe only four times this season, but have eclipsed that mark in three of the last five contests.

Virginia’s best performance from the free throw line was a perfect eight for eight outing against Minnesota on November 30. The effort tied for the sixth best performance in school history. UVa made all eight attempts from the line vs. Wake Forest (1/26/85) and Houston (12/10/89). Prior to the Minnesota game, the last time the Cavaliers were perfect from the free throw line was a six for six effort against Georgia Tech on February 22, 1990.

Spreading the Minutes Around
True to his word, head coach Pete Gillen is going deep into his bench in 1999-2000. After the first 10 games of the season, Virginia has nine players averaging double figures in minutes. No player is averaging 30 minutes of playing time per game.

Only four players, sophomore forward Chris Williams (29.0), junior guard Donald Hand (28.4), freshman forward/center Travis Watson (26.0) and sophomore guard Adam Hall (25.0), are averaging more than 20 minutes per contest. The other players averaging double figure minutes are: freshman guard Majestic Mapp (17.6), freshman guard Roger Mason (16.9), senior forward Willie Dersch (15.4), junior guard Keith Friel (11.2), and junior forward Stephane Dondon (10.5). Junior center Colin Ducharme is averaging 8.9 minutes per game.

Ducharme Eighth on Blocked Shot List
Junior center Colin Ducharme is currently eighth on Virginia’s all-time blocked shot list with 81. He needs two more blocks to move past Ted Jeffries (1990-93) into seventh place.

Ducharme is tied with current teammate Chris Williams for the ninth-best single season block total with 41. Ducharme notched his 41 blocks while leading the team in that category in 1996-97. Williams’ 41 blocks came last year. In addition to leading the team in blocks in 1996-97, Ducharme also held that honor in 1997-98 with 34.

Three Opponents Shoot 50 Percent
Earlier this season, Virginia had three consecutive opponents shoot 50 percent or better. Arizona State shot exactly 50 percent (28-56) on November 27, Minnesota connected on 55.1 percent (27-49) from the floor on November 30, and St. John’s converted a UVa opponent-best 55.4 percent (31-56) from the field on December 4.

Last year, Virginia did not have opponents shoot 50 percent or better in three-straight contests, however, on two occasions the opposition shot better than 50 percent in back-to back games.

Duke (1/10) shot 60.5 percent (46-76) followed by a 58.0 percent (29-50) outing by N.C. State (1/14) for the first back-to-back 50 percent shooting performance. In the second instance, Maryland (2/6) shot 54.2 percent (32-59) followed by a 58.7 percent (37-63) effort by Duke (2/11).

UVa Rallies to Defeat Richmond
Virginia, down by as many as 11 points in the first half and by seven points at halftime, rallied for a 69-65 victory at the University of Richmond on December 21. Sophomore guard Adam Hall scored a game-high 23 points to lead four Virginia players in double figures. Sophomore forward Chris Williams scored 14 points, freshman center/forward Travis Watson had his third double-double of the season with 10 points and 12 rebounds, and freshman guard Roger Mason scored 10 points.

UVa was down by eight points (55-47) with 10:24 left in the game, but the Cavaliers scored nine consecutive points to take a 56-55 lead with 6:50 left to play. Hall scored the final five points in Virginia’s nine-point surge.

The Cavaliers took the lead for good when Mason broke a 59-59 tie with a three-point field goal with 3:44 left in the game. It was the final field goal of the game for UVa.

Virginia made seven of eight free throws down the stretch to hold off the Spiders. Williams made five of six free throw attempts in the game’s closing moments.

Greg Stevenson led Richmond with 22 points.Cavaliers Roll to Victory over Hampton

Six UVa players scored in double figures in a 102-56 win over Hampton on December 10 at the Hampton Convocation Center. All five starters scored in double figures and shot better than 50 percent from the floor. As a team the Cavaliers shot a season high 54.3 percent (38-70). Forward Chris Williams led the way with a game-high 18 points, while junior Donald Hand and sophomore Adam Hall both contributed 15 points. Senior Willie Dersch (11), freshman Travis Watson (10) and junior Josh Hare (10) rounded out UVa’s double figure scorers. Hand also dished out a career-high 11 assists for his first double-double of the season.

Tommy Adams led Hampton (0-4) with 14 points and he also added five rebounds, five assists and two steals.

Virginia jumped out to a 20-0 lead and shot 63.2 percent (24-38) en route to a 59-23 halftime advantage.

Virginia Defeats Loyola
The Cavaliers halted their two-game losing streak with a 98-67 win over Loyola on December 8 at University Hall. UVa shot a then season-high 53.7 percent (36-67) from the floor and also registered another season best with 11 three-pointers. Sophomore Adam Hall led five Virginia players in double figure scoring with 18 points, all of which came in the first half. Hall was eight of 10 from the field. Freshman Travis Watson added 14 points and a game-high eight rebounds, while junior Donald Hand tossed in 13 points. Watson recorded four steals and Hand dished out eight assists. Freshman Roger Mason (12) and senior Willie Dersch (10) rounded out the double figure scorers for UVa.

Guard Jason Rowe led Loyola with 19 points, while forward Blanchard Hurd added 17.

Virginia Loses to St. John’s in Madison Square Garden
Despite a season-high 20 points from forward Chris Williams, and 10 points and nine rebounds from Travis Watson, UVa dropped an 85-63 decision to St. John’s University in Madison Square Garden on December 4. Erick Barkley led five St. John’s players in double figures with 27 points. The Red Storm shot 55.4 percent (31-56) from the field, including 50 percent (6-12) from three-point range, in the victory over the Cavaliers. The loss was Virginia’s second in a row.

UVa Loses to Minnesota in ACC/Big Ten Challenge
Virginia shot a season-low 36.4 percent from the field and the Cavaliers were out-rebounded 41-32 in a 74-62 loss at Minnesota in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on November 30. Terrance Simmons paced four Minnesota players in double figures with 15 points, while freshman forward Travis Watson scored a game-high 16 points and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds to lead Virginia.

Cavaliers Finish Fifth in Puerto Rico Shootout
After dropping its first round game in the Puerto Rico Shootout to South Carolina 73-71 on November 25, UVa won its next two games to finish fifth in the tournament. The Cavaliers defeated Providence 80-64 on November 26, and then posted a 70-64 victory over Arizona State in the fifth place game on November 27.

Junior guard Donald Hand was named to the All-Tournament team after averaging 19.3 points in the three contests. He was 20 of 28 (71.4 percent) from the free throw line, including a 14 of 17 effort against Providence. Hand scored a season-high 26 points in the win over PC.

Double-Double in Debut
Freshman forward Travis Watson became only the third freshman in Virginia history since the restoration of freshman eligibility in 1972-73 to record a double-double in the first game of his career. Oddly enough, it is also the second straight year that it has happened.Watson totaled 15 points and 14 rebounds in only 19 minutes in the season opener against Elon on November 19. He earned his first career start against VMI on November 21 and totaled 16 points (7 of 9 FGs, 2-2 FTs), seven rebounds, two assists, two blocked shots and two steals in 25 minutes of action.

Current sophomore Chris Williams opened his UVa career with a 20-point, 10-rebound ‘double double’ against Virginia Commonwealth last season.

The first player to record a double double in his first game was Scott Johnson, who scored 11 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in 27 minutes in the 1995-96 season opener against Tennessee-Martin.The performances of several notable Cavaliers in their college debuts are listed below.

Who?              Opp./Yr.               Pts.   Rebs.Junior Burrough   W&M 91-92               17     6Bryant Stith      Dartmouth 88-89         12     6Olden Polynice    Lafayette 83-84          8     5Ralph Sampson     Johns Hopkins 79-80     17     8Jeff Lamp         James Madison 77-78     24     3Marc Iavaroni     W&L 74-75               14     9Wally Walker      WFU 72-73                7     3

No Three-Pointers
Virginia held Arizona State without a three-point field goal on November 27, marking the sixth time since the inception of the three-point field goal in the 1986-87 season that UVa has accomplished the feat. Interestingly, two of the five previous games that Virginia held opponents without a three-pointer came last season in a span of eight days (Loyola 0-7 on 12/30/98 and Maryland 0-7 on 1/7/99).

Only Two in Double Figure Scoring
The Cavaliers had only two players score in double figures in their victory against Providence (Nov. 26) and their loss to St. John’s (Dec. 4), marking the only times this season Virginia has not had at least three players score in double figures in a game. Last season, Virginia failed to have at least three players score in double figures four times, but only won one of those contests (a 65-58 win over Clemson on January 17, 1999).

Back-to-Back 90 Point Games
The Cavaliers scored over 90 points in back-to-back games to open the season for the first time since the 1975-76 season. Virginia began the 1999-2000 season with a 97-66 win over Elon, then defeated VMI 98-57. The last time the Cavaliers scored that many points in the first two games of a season was in 1975-76 when they posted 113-65 and 101-57 victories over Hampden-Sydney and Washington & Lee, respectively.

The combined margin of victory over Elon and VMI (72 points) is the largest in the first two games of a season since 1975-76 when UVa won by 92 points.

Watson Perfect From Field
Freshman forward/center Travis Watson was a perfect six-for-six from the field against South Carolina on November 25 to tie for Virginia’s fifth best perfect shooting game from the field of all time. It is the 11th time that a player has made all six attempts from the field. Prior to Watson, the last UVa player to make every attempt (minimum of five) from the floor was Kenny Turner, who tied the school record with a nine-for-nine effort against Samford on 11/28/89. Jeff Jones (vs. Alabama-Birmingham 3/18/82) also shares the school record with Turner.

Dersch and Hand Elected Captains
Senior forward Willie Dersch and junior guard Donald Hand have been elected captains of the 1999-2000 Virginia basketball team by their teammates. Both players served as captains of the basketball team last season.

In 1998-99, Dersch started 26 of the 30 games in which he played and received the team’s Michael McCann Leadership Award. He averaged 10.2 points and 2.8 rebounds a game last season. The three-year letterwinner is the only senior on the 1999-2000 UVa team.

Hand started all 30 games last season and was the co-recipient of the Bill Gibson Cavalier of the Year Award as the team’s most valuable player. Hand led the Cavaliers in scoring (17.1 ppg), assists (123, 4.1 ppg.), steals (57), free throw shooting (86.2 percent, 162-188) and three-point field goals (50). He was the top free throw shooter in the Atlantic Coast Conference last season. His 41 points in Virginia’s 82-79 overtime victory over North Carolina State last February are a UVa sophomore record and the most points scored by a Virginia player since Barry Parkhill established a school record with 51 points against Baldwin-Wallace during the 1971-72 season.

1999-2000 ACC Pre-Season Media Prediction
(Indicates first place votes) Team Points 1. North Carolina (74) 792 2. Duke (16) 712 3. Wake Forest 577 4. Maryland 481 5. NC State 442 6. Georgia Tech 396 7. Virginia 358 8. Florida State 179 9. Clemson 113

Five Players Mentioned for ACC Pre-Season Honors
Virginia had five players receive votes for various 1999-2000 Pre-Season Atlantic Coast Conference teams as selected by the media attending the conference’s 38th annual Operation Basketball held on October 24 in Greensboro, N.C.

Headlining the UVa list is sophomore forward Chris Williams who was selected to the pre-season All-ACC second team. Williams also received consideration as the pre-season ACC Player of the Year. Last season, Williams was named the ACC Rookie of the Year and also garnered third team accolades. He was Virginia’s second leading scorer at 16.8 points per game and also led the squad with 7.5 rebounds per outing.

Junior guard Donald Hand was a 1999-2000 honorable mention pre-season All-ACC selection, having received the 13th-most votes. Hand led the Cavaliers in scoring in 1998-99 with 17.1 points per game and was an honorable mention All-ACC pick at the conclusion of the season.

Three members of Virginia’s heralded freshman class received consideration as the 1999-2000 pre-season ACC Rookie of the Year. Point guard Majestic Mapp, guard Roger Mason and forward Travis Watson were among seven league players to receive votes for Rookie of the Year.

Williams and Hall Win Silver
Sophomores Chris Williams and Adam Hall played on the USA Basketball Men’s Junior World Championship Team that earned a silver medal at the 16-team 1999 FIBA Men’s Junior World Championships in Portugal in July. Williams, the 1998-99 ACC Rookie of the Year and All-ACC third-team pick, set a tournament record for the USA with 12 blocked shots during the competition. He averaged 10.4 points and 4.4 rebounds per game.

Ducharme Living on The Lawn
Redshirt junior Colin Ducharme was selected to live in one of Virginia’s prestigious Lawn rooms during the 1999-2000 academic year. He is the 15th men’s basketball player to be chosen to live on The Lawn and the first since Matt Blundin, who played both basketball and football at Virginia, lived on The Lawn in 1992.

Ricky Stokes (1984), Ralph Sampson (1983) and Terry Gates (1980) are the other most recent basketball players to live on The Lawn.

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