CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia women’s basketball team (15-12, 4-12 ACC) suffered a 56-52 loss against No. 9 Duke (23-4, 13-3 ACC) on Sunday (Feb. 19) at John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, Va.

The Cavaliers trimmed a 13-point deficit down to two points in the fourth quarter, but the Blue Devils held on for the victory.

Taylor Valladay led the Cavaliers in scoring for the second straight game, contributing 19 points. Grad student McKenna Dale, who was honored before the game for Senior Day, scored 10 points with five rebounds.

Elizabeth Balogun led the Blue Devils with 12 points. Celeste Taylor had eight points and 12 rebounds.


Duke scored the first five points of the game, but a three-pointer from Dale ignited the Virginia offense. A three-pointer from Kaydan Lawson gave UVA a 10-9 lead with 5:02 left in the opening quarter, but Duke scored four straight baskets to take a seven-point lead. A jumper from Camryn Taylor and a three from Yonta Vaughn got the Cavaliers back to within two, 17-15, but Taya Corosdale hit a jumper in the paint in the final seconds of the period to give Duke a 19-15 advantage.

Corosdale hit a three to start the second quarter, but Virginia scored six straight points, with a layup from Valladay making it a one-point game, 22-21, with 5:39 remaining. Reigan Richardson hit a three and a jumper to build back up a six-point lead. UVA and Duke traded scores for the final four minutes of the period with the Blue Devils holding a 33-27 lead at the break.

Back-to-back three-pointers from Balogun and Vanessa de Jesus gave the Blue Devils their largest lead of the game, 42-29 with 5:45 remaining in the third quarter, but the Cavaliers mounted a comeback. Taylor hit a jumper to ignite the rally. Dale was fouled on a three-point attempt, making all of her free throws. Taylor hit another jumper before Lawson drained her second trey of the game to make it a three-point deficit, 42-39, with 1:20 left in the quarter. Jordyn Oliver made a layup for Duke to halt the run.

Corosdale hit her second three of the game to build up a six-point advantage with 9:25 left in the game, but the Cavaliers rallied again, with back-to-back trips to the free throw line, with Taylor and Alexia Smith both converting their opportunities to get the Cavaliers to within two, 47-45, with 8:15 left in the game. Duke built back up a seven-point lead on back-to-back scores. Valladay cut the deficit back down to three with nine seconds remaining, but the Blue Devils held on for the victory.


  • Virginia shot 33. 9 percent (19-of-56); Duke shot 44.2 percent (23-of-52)
  • Virginia was 10-of-11 from the free throw line; Duke was 2-of-9 (22.2 percent)
  • Duke held a 35-32 edge in rebounding
  • Virginia scored 18 fastbreak points
  • The Cavaliers tallied 13 steals, with Kaydan Lawson grabbing four
  • McKenna Dale blocked three shots and had five rebounds in addition to scoring 10 points
  • The 6,378 fans were the highest attendance for a non-field trip day game since having 6,450 fans at the Tennessee game on Nov. 20, 2011
  • The game was Virginia’s Play4Kay game, bringing awareness to the fight against women’s cancers
  • It was also the National Girls and Women in Sports Day celebration with letterwinners from the first three women’s teams at the University of Virginia will be honored at halftime and in a private pregame reception


“First of all, I just want to say thank you to our fans. That turnout was amazing. We had 6,378 fans in this building and that’s just one step forward in the right direction. I think every game has gotten better and better in our fan base, Wahoo Nation, has really come out and supported us. I’m just appreciative of them.

“As it pertains to our team in this game, this one hurts, obviously, to be four points away and that being a top 10 team in the country. There’s a lot to be proud of, but at the same time, we knew we had an opportunity right there that kind of slipped away. We’ll go back, watch the film, learn some defensive possessions we blew up, sometimes we didn’t execute. But overall I told the team I was really proud of them in their fight.”


  • Virginia closes out the regular season with back-to-back road games at Clemson on Thursday, Feb. 23 and at Miami on Sunday, Feb. 26
  • The 2023 ACC Women’s Basketball Tournament occurs March 1-5 at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C.