Virginia Hosts In-State and Conference Rival Virginia Tech Thursday at JPJA
CHARLOTTESVILLE – The Virginia women’s basketball team hosts in-state and Atlantic Coast Conference rival Virginia Tech on Thursday at John Paul Jones Arena. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m., and the game will be streamed live online as part of Cavaliers Live, UVa’s live audio and video streaming offering. Live statistics will also be available at VirginiaSports.com, and the game will be broadcast over the airwaves on WINA 1070 AM in the Charlottesville area.
A win on Thursday would give the Cavaliers the program’s 800th all-time victory. Now in its 39th season of women’s basketball, Virginia holds a 799-360 record. During that span, UVa has participated in three NCAA Final Fours (1990, 1991, 1992) and won 11 regular-season ACC titles. The Cavaliers have played in the ACC Championship game six times, winning three crowns. Prior to the 2011-12 season, 13 Division I programs had reached the 800-win mark.
Virginia (13-4, 1-2 ACC) is fresh off its first conference victory of the season, a 54-47 win at Clemson on Sunday (Jan. 8). Junior center Simone Egwu (Odenton, Md.) turned in her second double-double of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Cavaliers, while senior forward Chelsea Shine (Wayne, Pa.) scored 13 points and junior guard Lexie Gerson (Fort Washington, Pa.) added 10.
Senior guard Ariana Moorer (Woodbridge, Va.) continues to lead UVa in scoring, averaging 12.6 points per game. In her four-year career, Moorer has amassed 994 points and could reach the 1,000-point mark against the Hokies. With six points, Moorer would become the 27th Cavalier in school history to reach the milestone.
Sophomore guard Ataira Franklin (Bowie, Md.) is second on the team in scoring, averaging 12.4 points per game. In ACC games only, Franklin is averaging an impressive 17.3 points and 9.7 rebounds per game.
As a team, Virginia continues to form a defensive identity, as the Cavaliers are ranked second in the conference and 24th in the nation in scoring defense and are allowing opponents 52.5 points per game. The Wahoos have held 13 opponents to fewer than 60 points on the season.
Gerson is second in the ACC in steals per game (3.2), which ranks 27th in the country. As a team, Virginia is fourth in the conference in steals per game (14.1).
Virginia Tech (6-10, 2-1 ACC) is coming off of a home loss to Florida State, 75-40. Monet Tellier leads the team offensively by averaging 13.5 points per game, while Aerial Wilson averages 10.4 points and 3.7 assists per game.
Hokies’ head coach Dennis Wolff is in his first season on the Virginia Tech sidelines. Wolff was an assistant men’s basketball coach at Virginia from 1990-94.
Other Virginia-Virginia Tech connections on the sidelines include the fact that UVa assistant coach Katie O’Connor was a four-year letterwinner at Virginia Tech from 1995-99 and graduated in 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies. UVa graduate assistant Andrew Markowitz graduated in 2009 from Virginia Tech’s Pamplin College of Business.
Virginia leads the all-time series with Virginia Tech, 37-10, including 10-consecutive victories. In games played in Charlottesville, UVa holds a 19-4 advantage. The last Virginia Tech win in the series was in 2007 (60-58 in Charlottesville, Va.). The prior season, 2006, the Hokies came away with a 65-54 win, also on UVa’s home floor.
Following Thursday’s match-up, Virginia travels to Maryland on Monday (Jan. 16). Tip-off from Comcast Center is scheduled for 8:30 p.m., and the game will be televised by the ACC’s Regional Sports Network (Comcast SportsNet in the Charlottesville area).