CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – No. 15 Virginia (3-1) outscored Kent State (1-1) 9-2 in the overtime period to win 71-64 on Friday night at John Paul Jones Arena.
Sam Hauser (Stevens Point, Wis.) and Jay Huff (Durham, N.C.) led the Cavaliers with 18 points apiece. Hauser had six of UVA’s nine points in overtime, including the first five. Kihei Clark (Woodland Hills, Calif.) added 14 points. Huff finished with a double-double, grabbing a team-high 11 rebounds.
Virginia shot 48 percent for the game, while Kent State was 40 percent from the floor. UVA had the edge in rebounds, 32-30, and had 26 points off the bench. Kent State led in points in the paint (28-24) and scored 17 points off turnovers by UVA.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Virginia trailed early but used a 10-0 run that included threes from Clark and Tomas Woldetensae (Bologna, Italy) to go ahead 15-9. Hauser and Huff each had seven points through the first half to lead the Cavaliers. Huff had a dunk and a three just before the half to put UVA up 29-22 at the break.
Virginia was up 33-24 early in the second half, but Kent State slowly battled back and eventually took the lead 38-37 with 12:55 to play. The Golden Flashes led 56-52 with 4:14 remaining. Clark hit a layup to cut it to two. UVA converted eight free throws down the stretch of regulation to go ahead 62-59 with 38 seconds left. Kent State took several shots before hitting a three as time expired to send the game to overtime.
In the extra period, Reece Beekman (Baton Rouge, La.) came away with a steal and Hauser made a layup to put UVA ahead 64-62. Hauser then hit a three to make it 67-62 with 42 seconds to play. Kent State had just one field goal in the overtime period.
THE GAME BALL GOES TO
Kihei Clark took over the second half, driving the lane and getting to the free throw line. He finished with 14 points, going 9-for-12 from the free throw line, and added three assists.
- UVA has held each of its four opponents to under 40 percent field goal shooting
- Huff had a career-high 18 points and 11 rebounds for his fifth career double-double
- Huff has reached double figures in three games
- Hauser has reached double figures in all four games
- Hauser had a season-high four assists
- Clark had a season-high 14 points
FROM TONY BENNETT
On the shooting differences in the two halves:
“They played very hard. They went at us. They were quick and they were strong, and they exploited some things at times. They hit a couple of tough or fortunate shots that you know we’re, were kind of back breakers and could have been the difference. But we stayed the course and came up with enough tough shots. We’ve just got to keep working and keep improving and chipping away. The message after the game was – I said, here’s the line of maximum effort what you think it is. And for the most part, there’s a line above it about being uncomfortable that we have to somehow, as a group, find a way to get to, especially defensively and all out lay it on the line for each other, scrapping, that, that is necessary. So, again, they put pressure. They had some athleticism. When you go against those teams you do need a level of soundness and smarts, that just stands out. Again, we missed some free throws and all that but hard-fought game and good for us to be in it and we just take it and move on.”
Virginia hosts No. 8 Michigan State in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge on Wednesday, Dec. 9 at 9:15 p.m. at John Paul Jones Arena. The game will be broadcast on ESPN.