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Dec. 27, 2006


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The Game
Virginia enters tonight’s non-conference game against American with a 7-3 record. UVa is 1-0 in the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Cavaliers are coming off a seventh-place finish in the 2006 San Juan Shootout which was held Dec. 19-21. The Cavaliers won their final game of the tournament 59-52 over Puerto Rico-Mayaguez (Dec. 21).

American is 7-4 on the season and is coming off a 66-54 loss to Maryland (Dec. 23) in College Park. The Eagles have lost their last two games after getting off to a 7-2 start.

Tonight’s game will not be televised.

All UVa games are heard on the Virginia Sports Network originating at the Charlottesville Radio Group and WINA-AM/WWWV-FM in Charlottesville. Mac McDonald calls the play-by-play. Jim Hobgood provides the analysis.

The Series vs. American
Virginia leads the all-time series vs. American 4-1, but despite the close proximity of the schools they have not met in over 50 years. American registered its only win in the series – a 69-54 triumph at American on Feb. 3, 1951 – in the last meeting in the series.

The first four games of the series were all played in Charlottesville with the first meeting occurring in 1938. The Cavaliers won the initial meeting 41-33, and also won the next three match-ups during the 1946-47 season (50-35), 1948-49 season (57-51) and the 1949-50 season (67-58).

Virginia vs. The Patriot League
Tonight’s game against American is Virginia’s second meeting against a current Patriot League team. UVa’s 99-49 win over Bucknell on Dec. 28, 2000 was its first match-up against a current Patriot League team. The Patriot League was formed in the 1990-91 season.

Against the eight current members of the Patriot League, UVa is 25-34 all-time. All but one of these games (Bucknell in 2000) was played prior to the formation of the Patriot League. Virginia is 3-0 vs. Army, 4-1 vs. American, 2-1 vs. Bucknell and Lafayette, 1-0 vs. Lehigh and 13-31 vs. Navy. Virginia has never played Colgate and Holy Cross.

Prior to the Bucknell contest in 2000, the last time Virginia played a current member of the Patriot League was back in the 1983-84 season when the Cavaliers defeated Lafayette 71-59 in the season-opener at University Hall.

Former UVa Head Coach Returns To Charlottesville
Former Virginia head coach Jeff Jones is American’s head coach. Jones, who also played for UVa from 1979-82, served as the Cavaliers’ mentor from the 1990-91 season through the 1997-98 season. In eight years at Virginia, Jones registered a 146-104 (.584 winning percentage) record. He led the Cavaliers to postseason play six times, including five NCAA Tournament appearances. Jones led UVa to the Elite Eight in 1995 and to the NIT Championship in 1992.

Jones’ three assistant coaches are also UVa graduates. Jason Williford was a four-year letterwinner from 1992-95 and served as a team captain in 1994-95. He started 83 of the 108 games he appeared in. Greg Lyons earned letters at UVa in 1998, 1999, and 2001. Lyons, a walk-on, was a member of UVa’s last NCAA Tournament team in 2001. Kieran Donohue graduated from Virginia in 1997. Although Donohue did not play for the Cavaliers, he served in several different capacities on Jones’ staff from 1993 to 1998. He began as a student manager in 1993 and was a graduate administrative assistant in the 1997-98 season.

Moving Up the Scoring List
J.R. Reynolds is steadily climbing UVa’s all-time scoring list. Reynolds has tallied 1,246 career points and is currently 24th on the list. He needs 18 more points to move past Tony Laquintano (1960-62) into 23rd place. Cory Alexander is 22nd with 1,286 points.

Reynolds began the season in 37th place with 1,095 career points.

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