CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – No. 6 Virginia (17-3, 9-2 ACC) travels to in-state rival Virginia Tech (13-9, 3-8 ACC) in a Smithfield Commonwealth Clash Saturday (Feb. 4). Tipoff at Cassell Coliseum is set for Noon on ESPN2.
• No. 6 Virginia (17-3) is second in the ACC at 9-2, while Virginia Tech (13-9) is 12th at 3-8.
• UVA aims for its first two-game season sweep vs. Virginia Tech since recording back-to-back sweeps in 2018-19 and 2019-20.
• The Cavaliers are riding a seven-game win streak and are 7-2 away from John Paul Jones Arena (5-2 true road record).
• The Virginia-Virginia Tech game is part of the Smithfield Commonwealth Clash, which is a head-to-head, points-based athletics competition between the schools.
• Armaan Franklin is averaging 16.3 points during his 10-game double figure streak.
• Jayden Gardner has led the Hoos in scoring in the each of the past two games and is averaging 17.5 points and 7.0 rebounds during that span.
• UVA ranks first nationally in assist/turnover ratio (1.75), fourth in turnovers per game (9.4), ninth in scoring defense (60.2 ppg), 18th in assists per game (16.6) and 3-point percentage (38.5%), 24th in fouls per game (14.4), 33rd in turnover margin (3.2) and 34th in scoring margin (10.2).
• The Virginia-Virginia Tech game will be televised on ESPN2 and streamed online at WatchESPN.com.
• The game will also be broadcast on Virginia Sports Radio Network, VirginiaSports.com and Virginia Sports app.
• Live statistics will be located on VirginiaSports.com and the Virginia Sports app.
More on The Commonwealth Clash
• The Smithfield Commonwealth Clash is a rivalry between Virginia and Virginia Tech across all school-sponsored sports with 21 individual event points on the line.
• The school that accumulates 11 points or more will be crowned the winner of the Smithfield Commonwealth Clash trophy.
• The UVA-VT game is worth a half point in the Clash and the Cavaliers lead this year’s Clash 5.0-1.5.
• UVA captured the Clash in 2015, 2016 and 2019, while Virginia Tech has won the Clash in 2017, 2018 and 2022. The 2020 and 2021 clashes were canceled due to the pandemic.
The Head Coach
• Dean and Markel Families Head Men’s Basketball Coach Tony Bennett has a 333-120 (.735) mark in 14 seasons at UVA and 402-153 (.724) career mark in 17 seasons as a head coach.
• Bennett passed Terry Holland (326-173, 16 seasons) as the all-time winningest coach at UVA with the win over Syracuse (1/7/23).
• Bennett recorded his 400th career win at Wake Forest (1/21/23).
• Bennett has guided the Cavaliers to five ACC regular-season titles (2014, 2015, 2018, 2019 and 2021), two ACC Tournament titles (2014 and 2018) and one NCAA national championship (2019).
• The three-time National (2007, 2015 and 2018) and four-time ACC Coach of the Year (2014, 2015, 2018 and 2019) guided UVA to its 10th consecutive postseason berth in 2021-22.
UVA Ranked No. 6 in Latest AP Poll
• UVA is ranked No. 6 in the latest AP national poll and has been ranked in the top-20 in all 13 polls.
• UVA’s No. 2 ranking on Dec. 12 as UVA’s highest since spending the last four weeks at No. 2 in 2018-19.
• UVA returned to the top-5 for the first time on Nov. 21 since a No. 4-preseason ranking in 2020-21.
• The Cavaliers were ranked No. 18 in the AP Preseason poll.
• UVA was ranked in the preseason AP top-25 for the fifth straight year and ninth in the last 10 seasons.
About The Cavaliers
• UVA returned all five starters from last season’s team, which finished 21-14, 12-8 ACC (sixth) and advanced to the NIT.
• We play defense, take quality shots, pass the basketball, limit turnovers and transition points, rebound and play more defense.
• The Cavaliers return 91.4 percent of its scoring from last season, most among all NCAA Division I teams.
• Kihei Clark (11.4 ppg, 6.1 apg), Reece Beekman (9.7 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 5.1 apg), Jayden Gardner (10.5 ppg, 4.7 rpg), Armaan Franklin (13.1 ppg, 404% 3FG) and Ben Vander Plas (7.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg) have started the past five games.
• Isaac McKneely (6.6 ppg, 42.5% 3FG), Ryan Dunn (2.9 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 1.1 bpg), Kadin Shedrick (7.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 1.4 bpg), Francisco Caffaro (1.8 ppg, 1.8 rpg) and Taine Murray (1.5 ppg) provide depth off the bench.
• UVA used the starting lineup of Clark, Beekman, Franklin, Gardner and Shedrick in 14 games.
• Isaac Traudt and Leon Bond III are redshirting this season.
All-Time vs. Virginia Tech
• Virginia is 97-58 all-time vs. Virginia Tech, including a 23-32 mark in Blacksburg, in the series that dates to 1914-15.
• Virginia defeated Virginia Tech 78-68 earlier this season.
• The Hokies have a two-game win streak against the Hoos in Blacksburg, including a 63-52 win last season.
• The Cavaliers are 3-2 in their last five games against the Hokies and 7-3 in their last 10.
• Head coach Tony Bennett is 18-8 all-time vs. Virginia Tech.
Last Time vs. The Hokies
• Then-No. 10 Virginia (14-3, 6-2 ACC) earned its fourth consecutive ACC win in a 78-68 decision over Virginia Tech (11-7, 1-6 ACC) at John Paul Jones Arena Wednesday night (Jan. 18).
• Virginia’s entire starting lineup in Kihei Clark (20 points, 5 assists), Armaan Franklin (15 points, 5 rebounds), Jayden Gardner (12 points, 5-6 FG), Reece Beekman (11 points, 7 assists) and Ben Vander Plas (10 points, 7 rebounds) all scored in double figures for the Hoos, marking the second such instance in UVA’s last four games.
• UVA earned a half point in the Commonwealth Clash standings.
• UVA shot 50.9 percent, outrebounded Virginia Tech 30-27 and made eight 3-pointers.
• Darius Maddox led the Hokies with 13 points.
• Shooting guard Armaan Franklin (26, 25, 21, 20, 20) leads Virginia with five 20-point games, while Jayden Gardner (26), Kihei Clark (20) and Ben Vander Plas (20) have also registered 20-point efforts.
• Franklin has led UVA in scoring in eight contests this season and reached 1,000 career points vs. Boston College.
• Franklin registered his first career double-double with 25 points and career-best 10 rebounds at Wake Forest.
• Vander Plas is averaging 6.5 rebounds the past six games and is 11 of 27 from 3-point range during that span.
• Gardner (12 points, 11 rebounds) registered his 37th career double-double vs. Michigan and snared his 1,000th career rebound vs. Syracuse.
• Gardner’s has registered double figures in scoring in three of the last four games.
• Isaac McKneely matched a career high with four 3-pointers vs. Syracuse and has made at least one 3-pointer in 16 games.
• McKneely has a scored 11 or more points in four of the past seven games and is shooting 56.8 percent (21 of 37) from 3-point range during his nine-game 3-pointer streak.
• Reece Beekman registered his fifth career game with five or more steals vs. North Carolina (1/10).
• Beekman is shooting career bests from 3-point range (44.9%) and charity stripe (84.3%).
• Ryan Dunn has registered four games with three blocks.
Last Time Out
• Jayden Gardner scored 17 points to lead No. 6 Virginia (17-3, 9-2 ACC) to a road win at Syracuse 67-62 on Jan. 30.
• Kihei Clark added 12 points and a game-high 10 assists for his third career double-double as the Cavaliers gained their fifth consecutive win vs. the Orange.
• Gardner drew a charge with 60 seconds remaining and hit a midrange jumper that put UVA ahead 66-62.
• Armaan Franklin added 12 points, including a pair of huge 3-pointers in the second half.
• Virginia shot 46 percent, including 42.9 percent from 3-point range, and outrebounded the Orange 29-25.
• Judah Mintz led Syracuse (13-10, 6-6 ACC) with 20 points.
On The Horizon
• No. 6 Virginia hosts NC State Tuesday, Feb. 7. Tipoff at John Paul Jones Arena is set for 9 p.m. on ACC Network.