ORLANDO, Fla. – The Virginia women’s basketball team (0-1) opened the 2020-21 season with a 60-34 loss against UCF (1-0) at Addition Financial Arena in Orlando, Fla.

Virginia scored the first nine points of the game and held an early 13-1 lead, but the Knights answered with a 19-2 run in the second quarter to build up a 33-23 lead at the half. Virginia scored 11 points in the second half, with seven of those coming in the final two minutes of the game as the Knights cruised to their season-opening win on their home court.

Sophomore forward Meg Jefferson (Sydney, Australia) led the Cavaliers with eight points. Freshman forward Deja Bristol (Upper Marlboro, Md.) had a team-high eight rebounds.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Senior forward Tihana Stojsavljevic (Zagreb, Croatia) scored the first four points of the game. Baskets from sophomore guards Carole Miller (Alexandria, Va.) and Dylan Horton (Los Angeles, Ca.) gave UVA a 9-0 lead with 6:03 remaining in the first quarter. Freshman Kaydan Lawson (Cleveland, Ohio) scored eight seconds after taking the court for the first time in her collegiate career, pushing the lead out to 11-1 with just over five minutes remaining. Miller added a jumper with 3:50 remaining to make it 13-1, but it was the last points UVA would score in the period, heading into the second with a 13-5 lead.

UCF, which had opened the game missing its first seven shot attempts, got hot in the second quarter, mounting a 19-2 run. The Knights were 10-of-17 from the floor, including going 3-of-4 from three-point range to build up a 33-23 lead at the break.

Virginia had a 6:25 scoreless span to close out the third quarter as UCF pushed its advantage out the 45-27. UCF scored the first 11 points of the fourth quarter as UVA’s scoreless drought lasted through the first eight minutes of the period with a layup by Jefferson with two minutes left in the game ending the drought.

FROM HEAD COACH TINA THOMPSON

“Definitely excited about getting the first game under our belt to begin the season. The outcome, not so much. We’ve got a lot of work to do and we’ll come back after the holiday and get back after it.”

NOTES

  • Virginia shot 31.1 percent from the field (14-of-45) and was 0-of-9 from three-point range. UCF shot 46.2 percent (24-of-52)
  • UVA had a 33-28 edge in rebounding
  • Tihana Stojsavljevic made her first career start as did sophomore forward Meg Jefferson
  • Stojsavljevic scored UVA’s first points of the season on a layup 1:26 into the game
  • Virginia had four players make their collegiate debuts, three in the first quarter: Kaydan Lawson made her collegiate debut with 5:24 remaining, Deja Bristol with 3:27 remaining and Zaria Johnson (Houston, Texas) with 1:35 remaining
  • Freshman guard Aaliyah Pitts (Suitland, Md.) made her debut with 6:11 remaining in the third quarter
  • Lawson scored seven points in her debut, going 3-of-7 from the field with five rebounds
  • Virginia started the game making six of its first nine shots, but were 4-of-14 for the remainder of the first half and were 4-of-22 in the second half

ON THE HORIZON

  • Virginia plays its home opener on Sunday, Nov. 29, hosting East Carolina at 1 p.m. at John Paul Jones Arena

 

 

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