Men's Basketball Set To Face Georgia Tech
Jan. 6, 2000
Virginia (9-4/0-1) vs. Georgia Tech (7-5)
January 8, 2000 – 1:30 p.m.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia is currently 9-4 overall and 0-1 in the ACC. The Cavaliers hadtheir five-game winning streak snapped by eighth-ranked Duke as they lost ahard-fought 109-100 overtime decision at University Hall (Jan. 5).Georgia Tech stands at 7-5 overall and is opening ACC play with today’sgame. The Yellow Jackets are coming off an 80-71 loss to Kentucky (Jan.5), which stopped their four-game winning streak.
Television: Today’s game against Georgia Tech is scheduled to be televisedby Raycom/Jefferson Pilot. Tim Brant calls the play by play. Dan Bonnerprovides the analysis.
Radio: All UVa games are heard on the Virginia Sports Network originatingat WINA/WQMZ in Charlottesville. Mac McDonald calls the play by play. JimHobgood provides the analysis.
The Series vs. Georgia Tech
Each team has had a stretch of dominating the series, which GeorgiaTech now leads 26-24. The Cavaliers held the lead until the 1990s, when theYellow Jackets passed Virginia by winning 16 of the last 21 meetings,including the last five. Georgia Tech won both meetings last year, 77-65in Charlottesville (Jan. 23), and 74-68 in overtime in Atlanta (Feb. 25).Prior to losing the overtime decision last season, Virginia had won thelast three overtime contests against the Yellow Jackets.
Despite losing the last two home games to the Yellow Jackets, UVahas won 14 of the 21 games played in Charlottesville during the series.The Cavaliers’ last home win against Georgia Tech came in the 1996-97season, when they posted a 68-64 victory (Jan. 22).
The Cavaliers opened the series with Georgia Tech by winning 10 ofthe first 13 games, including eight straight from 1981-1983.
Jackets Shoot as Well as Any vs. UVa
Virginia has gained a reputation as an outstanding defensive clubduring the last 25 years. Georgia Tech, however, has put on some fineoffensive showings against the Cavaliers throughout the 1990s.
The Yellow Jackets shot better than 55 percent from the fieldagainst Virginia three times in the 1990s, while the other seven ACCschools have done that a combined seven times. In a curious statisticaloddity, the Yellow Jackets have shot the same percentage (56.9 percent,29-51) in their last two wins in Charlottesville.
Georgia Tech has put together three of the top-nine shootingperformances by an ACC team against Virginia in the last 10 seasons.Here’s the list of the top 10 ACC shooting performances against UVa duringthe 1990s:
|3.||North Carolina||1989-90||.583 (35-60)|
|4t.||NC State||1998-99||.580 (29-50)|
|6.||Georgia Tech||1997-98||.569 (29-51)|
|7.||Georgia Tech||1998-99||.569 (29-51)|
|8t.||Georgia Tech||1997-98||.566 (30-53)|
|10.||Wake Forest||1995-96||.558 (29-52)|
In last season’s 74-68 overtime loss in Atlanta (Feb. 25), UVasnapped a streak of three consecutive games in which Georgia Tech shotbetter than 50 percent against the Cavaliers. (The Jackets shot 34.5percent, 20-58). Georgia Tech shot 56.9 percent against the Cavalierstwice (Jan. 15, 1998 and Jan. 23, 1999). Sandwiched between those twooutings was a 51.4 percent outing (Feb. 14, 1998).
Duke is the only other ACC team to shoot 50 percent in threeconsecutive games against the Cavaliers in the 1990s. The Blue Devilsextended their streak of 50 percent shooting games to four with a 51.4percent (38-74) performance in a 109-100 overtime win over UVa onWednesday.
During the 1990s, the Cavaliers have held the opposition to acomposite 41.8 percent field goal shooting, while allowing the oppositionto score an average of 68.0 points per game.
But Georgia Tech has defied the numbers, shooting 45.4 percent andaveraging 74.6 points per game in 23 games against the Cavaliers in the1990s.
In Georgia Tech’s last 16 wins over Virginia dating back to thechampionship game of the 1990 ACC Tournament, the Yellow Jackets areshooting 47.8 percent from the field, while averaging 76.1 points.
That is a contrast to Georgia Tech’s performance when Virginiawins. In Virginia’s seven wins over Georgia Tech in the 1990s, the YellowJackets shot 40.4 percent from the floor and scored an average of 71.1points.
In Virginia’s seven wins against Georgia Tech in the 1990s, theYellow Jackets did not shot better than 42.6 percent from the field (29 of68 in the 1994-95 season).
These Games are Barn Burners
Even though eight of the last 10 meetings between these two teamshave been decided by at least nine points, people shouldn’t be surprised ifthis one goes down to the wire this afternoon.
Of the 37 games since the 1983-84 season, only 12 have been decidedby 10 or more points. Sixteen of the games have been decided by a margin offour points or less with UVa winning nine of them. The Cavaliers have wonall three games (1987, 1990 twice) decided by two points. Five games havegone into overtime, including a tripe overtime affair (1984) and a doubleovertime game (1995).
From 1985 to 1990 the teams played 15 consecutive games that weredecided by fewer than 10 points with Virginia winning eight of those games.
A breakdown of the close games in the series since the 1983-84season is below:
|1 point – 3||4 points – 4||7 points – 4|
|2 points – 3||5 points – 1||8 points – 1|
|3 points – 6||6 points – 1||9 points – 2|
End of the Road and Welcome Home
Virginia’s game against Belmont on December 28 (a 94-74 UVa win)marked the Cavaliers’ first home game since playing Loyola (Dec. 8) and wasonly their second home contest in 37 days. After defeating VMI 98-57 onNovember 21, UVa went 17 days before playing Loyola in its next home game.
The home game with Belmont ended a stretch that included seven ofeight games away from the friendly confines of University Hall. Duringthat eight-game stretch, Virginia compiled a 4-3 record on the road and wonits only home game.
The Belmont game marked the first of four consecutive Cavaliercontests in a 12-day stretch at U-Hall. The Cavaliers have won twoof three games during their homestand, winning 94-74 over Belmont (Dec. 28)and 89-50 over Dartmouth (Jan. 2). UVa lost to #8 Duke in overtime 109-100(Jan. 5). After today’s game against Georgia Tech, Virginia heads out onthe road for a pair of away games at N.C. State (Jan. 12) and Clemson (Jan.15).
Winning Streak Halted at Five
The Virginia men’s basketball team’s five-game winning streak wassnapped by Duke with a 109-100 overtime loss (Jan. 5). The five-gamewinning streak was the Cavaliers’ longest since winning seven consecutivegames in the middle of the 1994-95 season.
Nine Wins after 12 Games
Prior to the loss to Duke, Virginia had won nine of its first 12games in the 1999-2000 season. It marked the Cavaliers’ best start inthree seasons. The last time Virginia was 9-3 to begin a season was in the1996-97 campaign.
Five Consecutive Home Wins
Not only did Duke put a damper on Virginia’s overall start, but theBlue Devils also stopped UVa’s five-game home winning streak. The streakwas the longest to start a home season since the 1992-93 season when theCavaliers won eight straight home games.
Three Players Score 20 Points vs. Duke
In the Cavaliers’ 109-100 overtime loss to Duke (Jan. 5), UVa hadthree players score 20 or more points. Forward Chris Williams led the waywith 27, while freshman Roger Mason tallied a career-high 22 points.Junior Donald Hand rounded out the trio with 20 points. It marked thefirst time since the 1994-95 season that Virginia had three players score20 or more points in the same game.
Oddly enough, the previous occasion that three UVa playerssurpassed the 20-point plateau was against Duke in a 91-88 overtime victoryin Durham on January 14, 1995. Junior Burrough (23), Cory Alexander (22)and Harold Deane (22) were the three players that combined to accomplishthe feat.
Two Teams Reach Triple Digits
When Virginia (100) and Duke (109) reached triple digits on January5, it marked the first home contest in the history of Virginia men’sbasketball that both teams scored 100 or more points in the same game.
Virginia’s 128-98 home victory over George Mason in the 1994-95season was the closest both teams had come to scoring 100-plus points inthe same game.
The 100-point output by UVa against Duke was also the first time ithas scored 100 or more points in an ACC game since a 100-82 triumph overClemson in the 1992-93 season.
Watson Adds Name to Record Book
With 16 rebounds against Duke (Jan. 5), freshman Travis Watson seta Virginia record for the most rebounds by a freshman in an ACC debut. Ingames through January 5, he leads the ACC in rebounding with 9.5 per game.
In addition, his 16 rebounds are the most in a game by a Virginiaplayer since Norman Nolan grabbed 16 against George Mason (11/22/97).
Among the NCAA Statistical Leaders
Virginia is ranked among the NCAA leaders as a team in severalstatistical categories for games played through January 3.
The Cavaliers are 19th in scoring offense with an average of 82.8points per game. After the Duke game (Jan. 5), UVa’s average increased to84.1 ppg. Virginia is 20th in scoring margin at +16.5 ppg. That averagehas dropped to +14.6 ppg. after the Duke loss. The Cavaliers are tied for23rd in field goal percentage at 49.0 percent. Their field goal percentagedropped slightly to 48.8 percent after the Duke game.
Individually, sophomore Chris Williams is 23rd in the nation infield goal percentage at 59.5 percent (66-111). His percentage increasedto 60.2 percent (77-128) after the game against the Blue Devils.
Changes in Virginia’s Starting Lineup
Virginia head coach Pete Gillen has used seven different startinglineups and has had a total of 10 different players start in the first 13games of the Cavaliers’ 1999-2000 season. Virginia is 5-2 in games thisseason with new starting lineups. Only one player, sophomore Adam Hall, hasstarted all 13 games.
The Cavaliers opened the season with junior Stephane Dondon andsophomore Chris Williams at forward, and junior Colin Ducharme at center.Junior Donald Hand and Hall started in the backcourt. In the second game, a98-57 triumph over VMI, Gillen started freshman Travis Watson at centerinstead of Ducharme. With the same starting lineup in the third game ofthe season against South Carolina, the Cavaliers suffered a 73-71 setback.
Gillen changed his starting lineup against Providence and itresulted in an 80-64 victory. Hall, Williams and Watson remained in thestarting lineup, but junior guard Keith Friel and freshman guard MajesticMapp started in place of Hand and Dondon. The Cavaliers used their fourthdifferent 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 onNovember 30, Virginia started senior Willie Dersch, Ducharme, Hall, Handand Watson. UVa started its sixth different lineup against St. John’s (Dec.4) when freshman Roger Mason, Hall, Hand, Watson and Williams were in thestarting lineup.
Gillen used his seventh different starting lineup in a 98-67 winover Loyola (Dec. 8). Dersch and Williams started at forward with Watson atcenter. At the two guard positions, Hand and Hall received the startingnod. That lineup has started Virginia’s last six games.
Warming Up From Long Range
In its last six games, Virginia has heated up from three-pointrange, as it has made 52 three-point field goals in 131 attempts for 39.7percent. The percentage of three-pointers made has improved dramaticallywhen you consider what the Cavaliers were shooting beyond the arc in thefirst seven games (26.6 percent, 33-124). In the first seven games, UVamade 4.7 threes per game, compared to 8.7 per outing in the last sixcontests.
Overall, UVa is shooting 33.3 percent (85-255) from three-pointrange. Virginia made a season-high 11 three-point field goals againstLoyola (Dec. 8) and Belmont (Dec. 28) with seven different playersaccounting for the threes against Loyola. The 11 three-pointers are the11th highest total in school history. (The Cavaliers made 11 three-pointersin a game eight other times prior to this season.)
The Cavaliers are shooting an impressive 48.8 percent (396-811)from the field in the 1999-2000 season. If you subtract UVa’s three-pointfield goal shooting (33.3 percent, 85-255), the Cavaliers are hitting anoutstanding 55.9 percent (311-556) from the floor. In the NCAA Division Istatistics through games played January 3, the Cavaliers were tied for 23rdin field goal percentage at 49.0 percent.
Virginia is second in the ACC in field goal percentage throughgames played January 5, trailing only North Carolina (51.0 percent).
Virginia has shot 50 percent or better from the field in five of 13games this season, including four of the last six contests. UVa has shot45 percent or better in all but two games – Minnesota (36.4 percent ,24-66) and Richmond (42.6 percent, 23-54).
The Cavaliers have forced their opponents into 20 or more turnoversin four of the last six games, and in nine of 13 games this season. Duke(16), Dartmouth (13), Minnesota (11) and St. John’s (9) are the only teamsthat turned the ball over less than 20 times against Virginia this season.UVa’s opponents are averaging 20.5 turnovers per game (266 in 13 games) in1999-2000.
School Record Pace for Steals
The Cavaliers are averaging 9.8 steals per game in the 1999-2000season and at that pace, UVa would set a school record for steals. Lastyear, Virginia posted an all-time best 257 steals for an average of 8.6 pergame. At their current rate, the Cavaliers would conclude this season witha school record 294 steals (based on 30 games).
On four different occasions this season, Virginia has registered 15steals in a game, which ties for 11th place on UVa’s single game stealslist.
Cavaliers Set Season Highs Against Dartmouth
Virginia set season highs in three categories in its 89-50 win overDartmouth (Jan. 2). The Cavaliers shot an impressive 60.3 percent (35-58)from the field. The percentage is the highest since UVa shot 60.5 percent(23-38) against Wake Forest on February 24, 1996. Virginia’s previousseason high in 1999-2000 was 54.3 percent (38-70) vs. Hampton (Dec. 10).
The Cavaliers connected on 10 of 20 three-point attempts for aneven 50 percent against the Big Green to establish another season high.UVa shot 44.4 percent (4-9) from three-point range against Providence (Nov.26) in its previous season best.
UVa blocked nine shots against Dartmouth for another season high.The former season best was eight blocks against VMI (Nov. 21). The nineblocked shots ties for the 14th best single game total in school history.
Freshman forward/center Travis Watson came to Virginia with thereputation as a great rebounder and has lived up to that billing so far in1999-2000. Watson has led the team in rebounding in 11 of 13 games thisseason, including the last eight. He is averaging a team and ACC best 9.5rebounds per game and has been in double figures in rebounds four times.He grabbed a career-high 16 rebounds in the ACC opener against Duke (Jan.5).
In addition to leading the team in rebounding, Watson is also topson the club in blocked shots with 19, which includes a career-high fiveblocks against Dartmouth (Jan. 2). He is third on the team in scoring at11.9 points per game and in steals with 17. Watson is shooting a veryrespectable 54.5 percent (61-112) from the field. He has led the team inscoring twice, and has four double-doubles in points and rebounds.
Williams Named ACC Player of the Week
Sophomore forward Chris Williams is the ACC Player of the Week forhis performance in Virginia’s victories over Belmont and Dartmouth.Williams scored 44 points, grabbed nine rebounds and shot 70.4 percent(19-27) from the field in the two games.
Williams has broken out of an early season scoring slump byaveraging 18.4 points per game over the last seven games. During theseven-game stretch, Williams is shooting 65.8 percent (50-76) from thefloor, despite a two for 11 effort from three-point range. He has made 27of 37 free throws (73.0 percent) in the last seven games. Williams, the1998-99 ACC Rookie of the Year, is also averaging 5.1 rebounds, 1.7assists, and 1.7 steals a game during the recent stretch.
On the season, Williams is averaging a team-high 15.3 points pergame (10th in the ACC) and is shooting 60.2 percent from the floor (2nd inthe ACC). He also leads the team in steals (23) and is second inrebounding (5.5 rpg.).
As a freshman in 1998-99, Williams averaged 16.8 points and 7.5rebounds per game.
Hand”ing” Out Assists
Junior guard Donald Hand has moved into ninth place on Virginia’sall-time assist list with 289 in his career. Cornel Parker (1991-94) iseighth with 313. John Crotty (1988-91) holds the all-time UVa assistrecord with 683.
Hand leads the Cavaliers in assists this season with 67 (5.2 apg.),including 45 in his last six games.
In addition to leading the team in assists, Hand is also second onthe squad in scoring at 14.4 points per game, which ranks him 13th in theACC in scoring. He leads the team with 24 three-point field goals and isshooting 69.4 percent (43-62) from the free throw line. He has onedouble-double in points and assists to his credit.
Last season, Hand led the Cavaliers in scoring at 17.1 points pergame and also averaged 4.1 assists per game.
Friel Finds the Range
In the last three games, junior guard Keith Friel has made nine ofhis 17 three-point field goal attempts for a mark of 52.9 percent. He madefour of eight attempts against Belmont (Dec. 28) and four of five triesagainst Dartmouth (Jan. 2) before going one for four against Duke (Jan. 5).Prior to the last three games, Friel had connected on 11 of 32 three-pointattempts (34.4 percent).
On the season, Friel is 20 for 49 (40.8 percent) from beyond thethree-point arc. Twenty of his 23 field goals are three-pointers.
In two seasons at Notre Dame, Friel shot 39.7 percent (60-151) fromthree-point range, including 46.4 percent (45-97) his last season (1997-98).
Hall’s Scoring Runs Hot and Cold
Sophomore guard Adam Hall broke out of an early-season scoringslump with three consecutive double figure outings, but he has failed toreach double digits in the last three games.
After scoring, 18, 15 and 23 points against Loyola (Dec. 8),Hampton (Dec. 10) and Richmond (Dec. 23), respectively, Hall has onlyaveraged 6.3 points in the last three contests.
Despite the inconsistent scoring, Hall has shot very well from thefield in the last six games. He has shot an impressive 61.2 percent fromthe field (30-49). He has also made nine of his last 19 three-pointattempts after starting the season one for 11 (9.1 percent).
On the season, Hall is shooting 54.9 percent (50-91) from thefield, but is struggling at the free throw line having made 19 of 42attempts (45.2 percent).
Mason’s First Three-Pointer a Big One
Freshman guard Roger Mason’s first three-point field goal forVirginia couldn’t have come at a better time. Mason’s first three-pointfield goal of his collegiate career came with 3:21 remaining to play in theCavaliers’ 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 thegame’s closing moments as Virginia defeated the Spiders 69-65. It was theonly three-point attempt of the game for Mason, who missed his first 10three-point attempts this season.Mason Steps Up Against Duke
Guard Roger Mason turned in a terrific performance against Duke(Jan. 5) in his ACC debut. Mason scored a career-high 22 points on nine of12 shooting from the field (75.0 percent), including a perfect three forthree effort from three-point range. He also made his lone free throw,grabbed three rebounds, and had two steals while playing 28 minutes with noturnovers.
Lone Senior Stepping Up
Virginia’s lone senior, guard/forward Willie Dersch, has made themost of his return to the starting lineup. Dersch has started the last sixgames (UVA is 5-1) and has responded by scoring in double figures fourtimes. He is averaging 7.8 points per game in the last six games. Duringthat span he is shooting 57.7 percent (15-26) from the floor, including50.0 percent (5-10) from three-point range. He has also made all 12 freethrows in the last six games and is averaging 2.2 assists per game duringthat stretch.
On the year, Dersch is averaging 5.9 points per outing and isshooting 52.0 percent (26-50) from the floor. He is averaging 2.3 reboundsand possesses a 2.4 to 1 assist to turnover ratio.
Double-Double for Hand
Junior guard Donald Hand registered his first double-double of theseason and the third of his career against Hampton (Dec. 10) with 15 pointsand 11 assists. Hand’s 11 assists established a new career high. Hisformer career high was nine assists against Duke (Jan. 24, 1998). It isHand’s first double-double in points and assists. His first twodouble-doubles came last season against Wake Forest (Feb. 3) – 25 points,11 rebounds, and Georgia Tech (Feb. 25) – 28 points, 13 rebounds.
Hare Sets Career High
Junior guard Josh Hare scored a career-high 10 points in theCavaliers’ 102-56 win over Hampton (Dec. 10). He made four of eightattempts 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 addedfour rebounds.
Freshmen Making Significant Contribution
Three freshmen are playing significant minutes for Virginia in theearly part of the 1999-2000 season. Forward/center Travis Watson, andguards Majestic Mapp and Roger Mason have each seen action in all 13 ofVirginia’s games.
Watson has started 12 games for the Cavaliers and is the team’sleading rebounder (9.5 rpg.) and third leading scorer (11.9 ppg.). He alsoleads the team in blocked shots (19), and is third in field goal percentageat 54.5 percent (61-112, players with at least 15 field goals attempted)and steals (17). Watson is averaging 27.1 minutes of playing time a game.
Mason is averaging 7.2 points and 2.5 rebounds a game. He isaveraging 18.1 minutes of playing time a game and has 15 steals and 12assists.
Mapp is averaging 5.0 points and 0.7 rebound a game while playing17.6 minutes per contest. He has started two games and is shooting 38.5percent (10-26) from three-point range. Mapp has 31 assists and 26turnovers, and also has 10 steals.
Head Coach Pete Gillen
Pete Gillen is in his 15th season as a collegiate head coach andsports a 297-148 record for a .667 winning percentage. Gillen is in hissecond year as head coach at Virginia. His two Virginia teams havecompiled an overall record of 23-20. Gillen has led his teams topostseason play 11 times (eight NCAA, three NIT). He has been selected asthe conference Coach of the Year five times – all while coaching Xavier(Midwestern Collegiate Conference).
He successfully began his coaching career at Virginia with an 86-70win over Virginia Commonwealth on November 13, 1998.
Ten Different Double Figure Scorers
In the first 13 games of the 1999-2000 season, the Cavaliers havehad 10 different players score in double figures in a game. Virginia hadonly seven players reach double figures in scoring last season. Juniorguard Josh Hare became the 10th Cavalier to score in double figures in the1999-2000 season when he tallied 10 points against Hampton (Dec. 10). Theother double figure scorers this season are: (only first double digitperformance is listed) sophomore guard Adam Hall (12 vs. VMI), junior guardDonald Hand (18 vs. Elon), freshman guard Majestic Mapp (10 vs. Elon),freshman guard Roger Mason (10 vs. Elon), freshman forward/center TravisWatson (15 vs. Elon), sophomore forward Chris Williams (16 vs. Elon),junior guard Keith Friel (14 vs. South Carolina), junior center ColinDucharme (10 vs. South Carolina), and senior forward Willie Dersch (10 vs.Arizona State).
Not so “Free” Throws
After leading the ACC in free throw percentage (.734) for the firsttime since 1979 last season, the Cavaliers have struggled from the freethrow line in the early portion of the 1999-2000 campaign.
Through the first 13 games of the season, UVa has shot 64.5 percent(216-335) from the free throw line. The Cavaliers have shot over 65percent from the charity stripe only five times this season, but haveeclipsed that mark in four of the last eight contests.
Virginia’s best performance from the free throw line was a perfecteight for eight outing against Minnesota on November 30. The effort tiedfor the sixth best performance in school history. UVa made all eightattempts 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 fromthe free throw line was a six for six effort against Georgia Tech onFebruary 22, 1990.
Spreading the Minutes Around
True to his word, head coach Pete Gillen is going deep into hisbench in 1999-2000. After the first 13 games of the season, Virginia hasnine players averaging double figures in minutes. No player is averaging30 minutes of playing time per game.
Only four players, sophomore forward Chris Williams (29.6), juniorguard Donald Hand (29.2), freshman forward/center Travis Watson (27.1) andsophomore guard Adam Hall (24.2), are averaging more than 20 minutes percontest. The other players averaging double figure minutes are: freshmanguard Roger Mason (18.1), freshman guard Majestic Mapp (17.6), seniorforward Willie Dersch (16.1), junior guard Keith Friel (12.4), and juniorforward Stephane Dondon (10.1). Junior center Colin Ducharme is averaging7.9 minutes per game.
Ducharme Seventh on Blocked Shot List
Junior center Colin Ducharme is currently in seventh place onVirginia’s all-time blocked shot list with 83. He just passed Ted Jeffries(1990-93), who blocked 82 shots. Ducharme needs four blocks to move pastOlden Polynice (1984-86) into sixth place. Polynice had 86 career blocks.
Ducharme is tied with current teammate Chris Williams for theninth-best single season block total with 41. Ducharme notched his 41blocks while leading the team in that category in 1996-97. Williams’ 41blocks came last year. In addition to leading the team in blocks in1996-97, Ducharme also held that honor in 1997-98 with 34.
Three Opponents Shoot 50 Percent
Earlier this season, Virginia had three consecutive opponents shoot50 percent or better. Arizona State shot exactly 50 percent (28-56) onNovember 27, Minnesota connected on 55.1 percent (27-49) from the floor onNovember 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 orbetter in three-straight contests, however, on two occasions the oppositionshot 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 percentshooting performance. In the second instance, Maryland (2/6) shot 54.2percent (32-59) followed by a 58.7 percent (37-63) effort by Duke (2/11).
Cavaliers Fall Short in Battle with Duke
Virginia had its five-game winning streak snapped with a 109-100overtime loss to Duke in the ACC opener at University Hall on January 5.
Sophomore Chris Williams led UVa with a season-high 27 points andadded eight rebounds. Freshman Roger Mason tallied a career-high 22 pointsand made nine of 12 attempts from the field, including all three of histhree-point field goal attempts. Junior Donald Hand contributed 20 points,seven rebounds and six assists, while freshman Travis Watson notched hisfourth double-double of the season with career highs of 17 points and 16rebounds.
The Cavaliers trailed much of the first half, but erased anine-point first-half deficit when junior Colin Ducharme converted a layup14 seconds before halftime that tied the game at 43-43.
In the second half, Virginia built its lead to as many as 10points, 74-64, with 7:40 to play, but Duke came back to take an 81-80 edgewith 3:29 to go. Hand sent the game into overtime with a basket with fiveseconds remaining. In the overtime session, the Blue Devils made all sixof their field goal attempts and outscored UVa 20-11 to earn the 109-100victory.
Chris Carrawell led Duke with 25 points, while Mike Dunleavy cameoff the bench to score 21 points.
UVa Downs Big Green
Virginia won its fifth consecutive game by defeating Dartmouth89-50 at University Hall on January 2. Sophomore forward Chris Williamsled four Cavaliers in double figure scoring with 24 points.
Williams connected on 11 of 15 attempts from the floor and two offour free throws in the contest. He also added five rebounds, four assistsand two steals in 32 minutes of action. Junior guard Keith Friel tallied aseason-high 14 points on five of six shooting from the field, including afour of five effort from three-point range. Senior Willie Dersch andjunior Donald Hand rounded out UVa’s double figure scorers with 12 and 11points, respectively.
Virginia shot season-highs with 60.3 percent (35-68) from the fieldand 50 percent (10-20) from beyond the three-point arc. UVa also set aseason-high with nine blocked shots. Freshman Travis Watson led theCavaliers in that category with a career-high five blocks.
Senior Shaun Gee was the only Dartmouth player in double figures ashe scored 16 points.
Cavaliers Knock Off Belmont
Virginia defeated Belmont 94-74 at University Hall on December 28for its fourth consecutive victory.
Sophomore forward Chris Williams led four UVa players in doublefigure scoring with 20 points on eight of 12 shooting from the floor. Healso made four of seven free throws. Junior guard Donald Hand added 17points and eight assists, while senior forward Willie Dersch and juniorguard Keith Friel both contributed 12 points. All 12 of Friel’s pointscame on three-pointers.
The Cavaliers shot an impressive 54.1 percent (33-61) from thefield and equaled their season high with 11 three-pointers on 28 attempts(39.3 percent).
The Bruins jumped out to a 9-2 lead less than four minutes into thegame. Dersch then scored six of Virginia’s nine points in a 9-0 run as UVatook an 11-9 advantage with 14:40 to play in the first half. After sixties and seven lead changes, the Cavaliers jumped out in front for good,24-23, on a basket by Hand with 7:30 to go in the first half.
Belmont, which made 12 three-pointers in the game, was led by B.J.Proffitt, who scored 17 points.
UVa Rallies to Defeat Richmond
Virginia, down by as many as 11 points in the first half and byseven points at halftime, rallied for a 69-65 victory at the University ofRichmond on December 21.
Sophomore guard Adam Hall scored a game-high 23points to lead four Virginia players in double figures. Sophomore forwardChris Williams scored 14 points, freshman center/forward Travis Watson hadhis third double-double of the season with 10 points and 12 rebounds, andfreshman 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 with6:50 left to play. Hall scored the final five points in Virginia’snine-point surge.
The Cavaliers took the lead for good when Mason broke a 59-59 tiewith a three-pointer with 3:44 left in the game. It was the final fieldgoal of the game for UVa.
Virginia made seven of eight free throws down the stretch to holdoff the Spiders. Williams made five of six free throw attempts in thegame’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 overHampton on December 10 at the Hampton Convocation Center. All fivestarters scored in double figures and shot better than 50 percent from thefloor. As a team the Cavaliers shot 54.3 percent (38-70). Forward ChrisWilliams led the way with a game-high 18 points, while junior Donald Handand sophomore Adam Hall both contributed 15 points. Senior Willie Dersch(11), freshman Travis Watson (10) and junior Josh Hare (10) rounded outUVa’s double figure scorers. Hand also dished out a career-high 11 assistsfor his first double-double of the season.
Tommy Adams led Hampton with 14 points and he also added fiverebounds, five assists and two steals.
Virginia jumped out to a 20-0 lead and shot 63.2 percent (24-38) enroute to a 59-23 halftime advantage.
Virginia Defeats Loyola
The Cavaliers halted their two-game losing streak with a 98-67 winover Loyola on December 8 at University Hall. UVa shot a then season-high53.7 percent (36-67) from the floor and also registered another season bestwith 11 three-pointers. Sophomore Adam Hall led five Virginia players indouble 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 14points and a game-high eight rebounds, while junior Donald Hand tossed in13 points. Watson recorded four steals and Hand dished out eight assists.Freshman Roger Mason (12) and senior Willie Dersch (10) rounded out thedouble figure scorers for UVa.
Guard Jason Rowe led Loyola with 19 points, while forward BlanchardHurd added 17.
Cavaliers Finish Fifth in Puerto Rico Shootout
After dropping its first round game in the Puerto Rico Shootout toSouth Carolina 73-71 on November 25, UVa won its next two games to finishfifth in the tournament. The Cavaliers defeated Providence 80-64 onNovember 26, and then posted a 70-64 victory over Arizona State in thefifth place game on November 27.
Junior guard Donald Hand was named to the All-Tournament team afteraveraging 19.3 points in the three contests. He was 20 of 28 (71.4percent) from the free throw line, including a 14 of 17 effort againstProvidence. 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 inVirginia history since the restoration of freshman eligibility in 1972-73to 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 theseason opener against Elon on November 19. He earned his first careerstart against VMI on November 21 and totaled 16 points (7 of 9 FGs, 2-2FTs), seven rebounds, two assists, two blocked shots and two steals in 25minutes of action.
Current sophomore Chris Williams opened his UVa career with a20-point, 10-rebound “double double” against Virginia Commonwealth lastseason.The first player to record a double double in his first game was ScottJohnson, who scored 11 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in 27 minutes in the1995-96 season opener against Tennessee-Martin.
The performances of several notable Cavaliers in their collegedebuts are listed below.
|Junior Burrough||W&M 91-92||17||6|
|Bryant Stith||Dartmouth 88-89||12||6|
|Olden Polynice||Lafayette 83-84||8||5|
|Ralph Sampson||Johns Hopkins 79-80||17||8|
|Jeff Lamp||James Madison 77-78||24||3|
|Marc Iavaroni||W&L 74-75||14||9|
|Wally Walker||WFU 72-73||7||3|
Virginia held Arizona State without a three-point field goal onNovember 27, marking the sixth time since the inception of the three-pointfield goal in the 1986-87 season that UVa has accomplished the feat.Interestingly, two of the five previous games that Virginia held opponentswithout a three-pointer came last season in a span of eight days (Loyola0-7 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 theirvictory 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 threeplayers score in double figures in a game. Last season, Virginia failed tohave at least three players score in double figures four times, but onlywon 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 openthe season for the first time since the 1975-76 season. Virginia began the1999-2000 season with a 97-66 win over Elon, then defeated VMI 98-57. Thelast time the Cavaliers scored that many points in the first two games of aseason was in 1975-76 when they posted 113-65 and 101-57 victories overHampden-Sydney and Washington & Lee, respectively.
The combined margin of victory over Elon and VMI (72 points) is thelargest in the first two games of a season since 1975-76 when UVa won by 92points.
Watson Perfect From Field
Freshman forward/center Travis Watson was a perfect six-for-sixfrom the field against South Carolina on November 25 to tie for Virginia’sfifth best perfect shooting game from the field of all time. It is the11th time that a player has made all six attempts from the field. Prior toWatson, the last UVa player to make every attempt (minimum of five) fromthe floor was Kenny Turner, who tied the school record with a nine-for-nineeffort against Samford on 11/28/89. Jeff Jones (vs. Alabama-Birmingham3/18/82) also shares the school record with Turner.
Dersch and Hand Elected Captains
Senior forward Willie Dersch and junior guard Donald Hand have beenelected captains of the 1999-2000 Virginia basketball team by theirteammates. Both players served as captains of the basketball team lastseason.
In 1998-99, Dersch started 26 of the 30 games in which he playedand received the team’s Michael McCann Leadership Award. He averaged 10.2points and 2.8 rebounds a game last season. The three-year letterwinner isthe only senior on the 1999-2000 UVa team.
Hand started all 30 games last season and was the co-recipient ofthe Bill Gibson Cavalier of the Year Award as the team’s most valuableplayer. Hand led the Cavaliers in scoring (17.1 ppg), assists (123, 4.1ppg.), steals (57), free throw shooting (86.2 percent, 162-188) andthree-point field goals (50). He was the top free throw shooter in theAtlantic Coast Conference last season. His 41 points in Virginia’s 82-79overtime victory over North Carolina State last February are a UVasophomore record and the most points scored by a Virginia player sinceBarry Parkhill established a school record with 51 points againstBaldwin-Wallace during the 1971-72 season.
Williams and Hall Win Silver
Sophomores Chris Williams and Adam Hall played on the USABasketball Men’s Junior World Championship Team that earned a silver medalat the 16-team 1999 FIBA Men’s Junior World Championships in Portugal inJuly. Williams, the 1998-99 ACC Rookie of the Year and All-ACC third-teampick, set a tournament record for the USA with 12 blocked shots during thecompetition. He averaged 10.4 points and 4.4 rebounds per game.
1999-2000 ACC Pre-Season Media Prediction
(Indicates first place votes)
|1.||North Carolina (74)||792|
Five Players Mentioned for ACC Pre-Season Honors
Virginia had five players receive votes for various 1999-2000Pre-Season Atlantic Coast Conference teams as selected by the mediaattending the conference’s 38th annual Operation Basketball held on October24 in Greensboro, N.C.
Headlining the UVa list is sophomore forward Chris Williams who wasselected to the pre-season All-ACC second team. Williams also receivedconsideration as the pre-season ACC Player of the Year. Last season,Williams was named the ACC Rookie of the Year and also garnered third teamaccolades. He was Virginia’s second leading scorer at 16.8 points per gameand also led the squad with 7.5 rebounds per outing.
Junior guard Donald Hand was a 1999-2000 honorable mentionpre-season All-ACC selection, having received the 13th-most votes. Handled the Cavaliers in scoring in 1998-99 with 17.1 points per game and wasan honorable mention All-ACC pick at the conclusion of the season.
Three members of Virginia’s heralded freshman class receivedconsideration as the 1999-2000 pre-season ACC Rookie of the Year. Pointguard Majestic Mapp, guard Roger Mason and forward Travis Watson were amongseven league players to receive votes for Rookie of the Year.
Ducharme Living on The Lawn
Redshirt junior Colin Ducharme was selected to live in one ofVirginia’s prestigious Lawn rooms during the 1999-2000 academic year. Heis the 15th men’s basketball player to be chosen to live on The Lawn andthe first since Matt Blundin, who played both basketball and football atVirginia, 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.