Jocelyn Willoughby scored 24 points and Kylie Kornegay-Lucas grabbed 12 rebounds as the Cavaliers limited Syracuse to its fewest points since 2007
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia women’s basketball team (9-13, 4-7 ACC) picked up a 57-41 victory over Syracuse (10-11, 4-6 ACC) on Sunday (Feb. 2) at John Paul Jones Arena.
Virginia led wire-to-wire, limiting Syracuse to 26.3 percent shooting and its lowest point total since 2007..
Senior guard Jocelyn Willoughby (East Orange, N.J.) had her 10th 20-point game of the season, finishing with 24 points and seven rebounds. Freshman guard Shemera Williams (Milwaukee, Wisc.) came off the bench to score 11 points. Syracuse’s Emily Engstler had a double-doubel with 10 points and 11 rebounds.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Virginia, taking advantage of seven-straight missed field goal attempts by Syracuse, opened the game on a 6-0 run. The Cavaliers made four-straight field goal attempts to build up a 12-4 lead. The Orange went on a 6-0 run of their own, but the Cavaliers held on to a 14-10 lead heading into the second quarter. An and-one from freshman guard Shemera Williams (Milwaukee, Wisc.) gave UVA a 21-13 lead with 6:24 remaining in the first half. Back-to-back jumpers from senior forward Lisa Jablonowski (Ernster, Luxembourg) and freshman guard Kylie Kornegay-Lucas (Camden, Del.) extended UVA’s run out to 9-0 and gave the Cavaliers a double-digit lead, 25-13. Syracuse chipped away at the deficit, going into the break trailing 28-19.
Back-to-back baskets from redshirt freshman guard Amandine Toi (Paris, France) and Jablonowski extended the Cavalier lead back out to double-digits, 34-21, with 6:11 remaining in the third quarter. Syracuse scored six-straight points to whittle UVA’s lead to 38-29, but a fastbreak layup from Williams ended the run and gave UVA a 40-29 advantage heading into the fourth quarter. Virginia stifled all hints of a comeback from the Orange in the final period. After Jablonowski blocked a Syracuse attempt, Willoughby scored a layup on the opposite end to give UVA a 46-35 lead with 5:03 remaining. After Syracuse scored on its next possession, Willoughby hit another jumper. An and-one transition basket from Williams with 2:16 remaining made it a 54-39 game, cementing the victory.
FROM HEAD COACH TINA THOMPSON
“This was a necessary win for us. I’m really excited for our kids. We needed to get this one today and we played from start to finish. We’re doing a much better job of playing a complete game and stringing quarters together and when we can do that, we have very positive results. Rebounding was very important today. We emphasized boxing out. Kylie [Kornegay-Lucas] does a really good job from the point guard position of getting back and getting rebounds and she was definitely key when our bigs, or our not-so-bigs were boxing out their bigs and getting the ball. Jocelyn [Willoughby] is always one of the top players on our team in the rebounding respect, but Tihana [Stojsavljevic] did a great job coming in and taking care of the boards. We had a total team effort in that area.”
- The 41 points by Syracuse was its fewest scored in a game since falling to Rutgers, 68-40 on Feb. 14, 2007
- The 41 points was the fewest points allowed by the Virginia defense this season
- Virginia shot 40.7 percent (22-of-54) while Syracuse was 15-of-57 (26.3 percent) and 2-of-17 (11.8 percent) from three-point range
- Virginia was 0-of-11 from three-point range, the first time since Nov. 29, 2013 that the Cavaliers failed to make at least one three-point basket
- Virginia held a 46-31 edge in rebounding
- Virginia outscored Syracuse 34-24 in the paint
- Jocelyn Willoughby had a hand in UVA’s first four baskets of the game, scoring three and assisting on the other
- Willoughby was 10-of-12 from the free throw line
- Kylie Kornegay-Lucas grabbed five of Virginia’s first six rebounds. She had eight rebounds in the first half and finished the game with 12, tying her career high
- Junior forward Tihana Stojsavljevic (Zagreb, Croatia) had a career-high eight rebounds in 13 minutes on the court
- Senior guard Dominique Toussaint (Staten Island, N.Y.) did not play in the game due to a violation of team rules
ON THE HORIZON
- Virginia closes out its current homestand by hosting Clemson on Thursday, Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. at John Paul Jones Arena
- Reserved single-game tickets are $8 if purchased in advance or online and $10 if purchased at the JPJ Box Office. General admission tickets are $5 if purchased in advance or online and $8 if purchased at the JPJ Box Office. Single-game courtside tickets may be purchased for $15
- For more information or to purchase tickets, fans should contact the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office at 1-800-542-UVA1 (8821). Fans can also purchase tickets online at VirginiaSports.com or in-person at the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium