No. 5 Virginia Storms Back To Defeat Rutgers, 76-68
Dec 23, 2001
Rutgers, which had won eight straight games, used a 12-0 run bridginghalftime to take a 45-36 lead with 19:04 remaining in the game. That promptedVirginia coach Pete Gillen to call a time out.
Coming out of the huddle, the Cavaliers (8-0) scored seven unanswered pointsto get within 45-43. Virginia tied it 48-48 on Adam Hall’s jumper with 13:51left.
Virginia eventually edged ahead 61-57. But the Scarlet Knights pulled towithin a point, at 66-65, heading into the final three minutes, before theCavaliers scored eight unanswered points to secure the victory.
Jerome Coleman scored 16 points, and Herve Lamizana had 15 for Rutgers(8-3). The Scarlet Knights (8-3) made 15 of 28 shots in the first half, butjust 12 of 32 in the second.
The lead seesawed over the final minutes of the first half. Virginia trailedby as many as six points before an 11-0 run gave the Cavaliers a 29-24 leadwith 6:46, capped by Hall’s alley-oop dunk on a pass from Roger Mason Jr.
But after Virginia built up its biggest lead of the half at 33-27, theScarlet Knights used a 13-3 run for a 40-36 halftime lead.
Both teams were plagued by foul trouble.
Rutgers played much of the game without forward Rashod Kent, its leadingrebounder and second-leading scorer. He picked up his third foul four minutesinto the game, sat out the rest of the half, and fouled out with 6:30 left foran illegal screen.
Kent, who averages 11.6 points and 11.8 rebounds, finished with just twopoints and two rebounds.
Virginia missed forward Chris Williams, who picked up his fourth foul with14:17 remaining and sat for the next eight minutes, finishing with five points.But Mathis’ reverse layup and Watson’s putback gave the Cavaliers a 70-65 leadwith two minutes remaining.
After misses by Mike Sherrod on consecutive possessions, Mathis went insidefor another score and Mason sank two free throws to extend the lead to 74-65.
Virginia, in the midst of a school-record 25-game nonconference winningstreak, was coming off a 61-55 victory over No. 16 Georgetown on Thursdaynight.
Rutgers’ winning streak started after the team opened the season by losingto East Carolina and Virginia Commonwealth.