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Dec. 5, 2004


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The Game
Virginia enters tonight’s game with a 6-0 record, marking the fourth time in the last five seasons UVa has won its first six contests. The Cavaliers, ranked 24th in The Associated Press and 25th in the ESPN/USAToday Top 25 polls, are coming off an 89-87 victory over Auburn on Friday (December 3) at the Siegel Center in Richmond, Va. Iowa State stands at 3-1 in 2004-05 and is coming off a 99-82 loss at Northern Iowa on Wednesday (December 1) in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The Cyclones finished the 2003-04 season with a 20-13 overall record and a 7-9 mark in the Big 12. Iowa State advanced to the semifinals of the NIT where it lost to Rutgers 84-81 in overtime.

The Series vs. Iowa State
Tonight’s game is just the second meeting between Virginia and Iowa State in men’s basketball. The Cavaliers won the initial meeting 85-74 last season on December 31 in Charlottesville.

Virginia vs. the Big 12 Conference
Given the geographic disparity of the Big 12 Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference, it isn’t surprising that Virginia rarely plays schools from the Big 12.

Against the 12 current members of the Big 12, the Cavaliers are 7-8 all-time. The Cavaliers are 1-0 vs. Iowa State, 4-1 vs. Missouri, 1-1 vs. Oklahoma, 1-2 vs. Kansas, and 0-1 vs. Baylor, Nebraska, Oklahoma State and Texas A&M.

Virginia has played only four games against teams when they were a member of the Big 12 Conference (the Big 12 was formed in the 1996-97 season). In the first game, the Cavaliers lost to Nebraska 80-65 in the Rainbow Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii on December 27, 1997. In the 2000-2001 season, UVa defeated Missouri 85-72 on January 20, 2001 in Charlottesville. Virginia lost to Missouri 81-77 on February 3, 2002 in Columbia, Mo. In Virginia’s most recent meeting against a Big 12 team, which was against tonight’s opponent Iowa State last season, the Cavaliers registered an 85-74 victory (December 31) at University Hall.

Last Season vs. Iowa State
Virginia erased a 66-59 deficit with a 26-8 run over the final 6:27 of the game for an 85-74 come-from-behind victory over previously undefeated Iowa State December 31 in University Hall.

The Cavaliers forced six turnovers in the final 6:18 of the game and limited the Cyclones to three field goals in the same span. Iowa State pushed its lead to seven points (66-59) for the second time in the game on a Jake Sullivan jumper at the 6:54 mark. UVa then used a 10-2 run to take a 69-68 lead with 4:52 to go. Derrick Byars scored the final five points of the spurt. Devin Smith broke a 69-69 tie with a three-pointer with 3:46 remaining to put the Cavaliers on top for good.

Smith led UVa with a season-high 25 points and a career-high five steals. He also added three blocked shots, three assists and three rebounds. Smith made 9-14 attempts from the field. Byars tallied 20 points and eight rebounds, while Donte Minter came off the bench to score 11 points. Elton Brown rounded out UVa’s double figure scorers with 10 points.

The Cavaliers committed a season-low five turnovers in the game while forcing 23 Iowa State miscues. UVa also registered a season-best 15 steals with the Cyclones coming up with just one steal. The Cyclones shot an impressive 55.2 percent (32-58) from the field and made 7-14 three-point attempts. Virginia shot a respectable 48.4 percent (31-64) from the floor and outscored Iowa State 15-3 at the free throw line. The Cyclones held a 40-23 advantage in rebounds, including a 19-7 edge in the first half.

Jared Homan led Iowa State with 19 points, nine boards and four blocks, while Jake Sullivan had 16 points and five assists.

Hectic Stretch
Tonight’s game at Iowa State is UVa’s fourth in the last nine days (and third in six days – all three away from the friendly confines of University Hall). Virginia will wrap up a busy 11-day stretch in which it will have played five games with a home contest against Furman on Wednesday (Dec. 8).

UVa will then take a two-week hiatus for final exams before returning to action on December 23 against Loyola Marymount.

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