Virginia Hosts Elon On Saturday
CHARLOTTESVILLEThe Virginia men’s basketball team has won its last two games to improve to 8-2 on the season and the Cavaliers will try to continue their recent success on Saturday (Dec. 22) when they host Elon at John Paul Jones Arena. The game is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. and will be televised by Comcast SportsNet.
Virginia is coming off a 79-65 win over Hampton on Wednesday (Dec. 19) at John Paul Jones Arena. Senior forward Adrian Joseph led the Cavaliers against the Pirates with 19 points on 7-11 shooting from the field, including 4-7 from three-point range.
Freshman forward Mike Scott and sophomore forward/center Jerome Meyinsse also made significant contributions for UVa. Scott, making the first start of his collegiate career, scored a season-high 15 points and grabbed six rebounds. Meyinsse played a career-high 22 minutes off the bench. He tied his career high with nine points and had a career-high nine rebounds.
Senior guard Sean Singletary scored 12 points, had four rebounds and four assists. He has now scored in double figures in 32 consecutive games, the longest active streak in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Virginia entered the week ranked first among NCAA Division I teams in rebounding margin and the Cavaliers out-rebounded Hampton 42-32. UVa has out-rebounded nine of its 10 opponents and currently has a rebounding margin of +14.1. Joseph leads the Cavaliers in rebounding with an average of 8.3 a game and Scott is averaging 6.2 rebounds a game.
Seven Virginia players are averaging at least 5.0 points a game, led by Singletary with an average of 18.6 points a game. Joseph is averaging 12.7 points a game and junior forward/guard Mamadi Diane is averaging 11.2 points a game. As a team, the Cavaliers are averaging 80.6 points a game and allowing an average of 65.8 points a game.
Nine UVa players are averaging at least 11 minutes of playing time a game, led by Singletary who is averaging 32.6 minutes played a game.
Elon enters Saturday’s game with a record of 5-6 (3-1 in the Southern Conference) after a 67-64 loss at Penn on Thursday (Dec. 20). Elon has lost its last two games and three of its last four. The game at Virginia is the third of five consecutive road games for the Phoenix.
Junior Ola Atoyebi, a 6-8 forward, leads Elon in scoring and rebounding. He is averaging 15.0 points and 7.6 rebounds a game. Also averaging in double figures in scoring for the Phoenix are senior guard Montell Watson (11.5 ppg.) and freshman guard Chris Long (10.7 ppg.).
Ernie Nestor is in his fifth season as Elon’s head coach. He also was the head coach at George Mason for five years (1988-1993). Nestor was also an assistant at Wake Forest for many years during his coaching career.
Virginia leads the series with Elon 5-0. The teams have not met since the 1999-2000 season when the Cavaliers won 97-66 at University Hall.
After the game with Elon, Virginia does not play again until its hosts Hartford at John Paul Jones Arena on Dec. 30. That game is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. and will be broadcast on ACC Select at www.accselect.com.