#13 Virginia finishes pre-ACC slate with win over Hampton
The ‘Hoos (11-1) led 24-23 when a pair of Devon Hall free throws with 4:09 to go jumpstarted the end-of-half burst that ended with a DeAndre Hunter layup just before halftime that made it 40-25 UVA at the break.
An 18-4 second-half run over a nearly eight-minute stretch of the second half put the game away.
Hampton (5-9) shot just 25.9 percent (14-of-54) from the floor for the game. The Pirates hung around in the first half with early hot shooting from three-point range, connecting on 5-of-9 from beyond the arc in the opening 20 minutes, and finishing 7-of-16 (43.8 percent) for the game.
Virginia got 15 points from Kyle Guy, who shot 6-of-13 from the floor and 3-of-6 from three-point range.
Hunter scored 14 points in 19 minutes off the bench for the Cavaliers, who also got 10 points from Ty Jerome.
UVA has an eight-day break before its ACC opener on Dec. 30 at home against Boston College.
- Virginia improved to 9-0 all-time vs. Hampton
- After two wins this week against MEAC opponents, Virginia is 27-0 all-time versus the MEAC and 15-0 under coach Tony Bennett
- Virginia is 8-0 this season when scoring more than 70 points and 103-6 under Bennett
- Virginia has scored 80 points in three games this season, all wins. Under Bennett, they are 26-1 when scoring 80 points
- The Cavaliers have held all 12 of their opponents under 50 percent shooting
- The Cavaliers are 6-0 when holding teams under 50 points in 2016-17 and 70-2 when holding teams under 50 points in the Bennett era
- The Cavaliers have a 10-game home-winning streak and are 8-0 at John Paul Jones Arena this season
- The Cavaliers broke the game open with a 19-6 run over6:32in the first half
- Double-figure scorers: Kyle Guy (15), De’Andre Hunter (14), Ty Jerome (10)
- Hunter finished with the second-highest point total of his career (14)
- Isaiah Wilkins finished with a game-high nine rebounds and three blocked shots
- Marco Anthony recorded his first career blocked shot
- Ty Jerome tied a season-high with two steals
- Guy finished with double digit points for the 10th time this season
- Nine players played 10 or more minutes
Postgame: UVA coach Tony Bennett
On senior forward Isaiah Wilkin’s meaning to the team:
“I’m glad the crowd recognized what he did in the first half with his hustle and his heart because that’s as good as it gets. That was my halftime talk, I said that is what it is about. I said, that’s a hunger and a drive that I want. I said about Isaiah, let’s all just hook our wagons to him and play with that kind of desire and that kind of will to just lay it on the line. Hampton, their guards are tough. They made some contested shots early. They added the two new guys. And I knew they were capable, Jermaine Marrow is a heck of a player and can score, and when they made those, it was kind of a back and forth game. But the hustle plays that Isaiah made, keeping balls alive on the glass, are really good. That was a good Christmas gift for me.”
On his thoughts, early in the game:
“I watched them play, they beat Appalachian State by about thirty earlier this year and I saw them battle some teams for halves. And then with the addition of the young man who was the nation Junior College player of the year as a freshman and he played a lot of minutes at TCU in the Big 12, Malique Trent-Street, he gives them some athleticism. And then Jaekwon Carlyle has come on, he’s a good defender, he made some of those shots. I said to our guys, you are going to have to play against these guys. Their perimeters are good, they are going to ball screen you to death, and there’s not a lot of life. A lot of people, they say ‘We’re good’ and then are going on vacation, but not so with this team. And I think they’ll only get better as they get their chemistry together with those new guys.”
On rebounding performance:
“That is a big part of our defense, getting back and playing against a set defense and trying to limit them to one shot. It has to be a group thing. I think that with Hampton and others, the size in the interior is not the same as some of the teams we’ll see, so the ability to block out with position and then go get the ball is important. A lot of times the guards have to come back and rebound. And Devon Hall, he didn’t have as good of an offensive stat line, but I think that his size and his work on Jermaine Marrow made a difference as the game wore on. We are going to need that and Isaiah’s offensive rebounding, they are significant.”
On sophomore guard Kyle Guy’s second-half scoring:
“It just takes a shot opportunity or a shot attempt. I think he almost shattered the backboard on his first shot, he shot it and hit the glass first. But Kyle is unique because, as talented of a shooter as he is, I have never seen a guy who could either shoot and air ball and a miss a shot and then all it takes is one shot. With West Virginia and then here, we want him to hunt the shot and be aggressive and, of course, take good shots, and he really got going off of a couple of out of bounds plays in the second half. But it is rare to see a guy maybe miss a few bad ones and he is always one shot away from getting on a streak with that quick release. He is going to keep looking, we have to screen for him and keep getting him open, keep making the right plays.”
On team improvement through the non-conference schedule:
“I thought that Isaiah and Ty [Jerome] were really key in the early part of the game to keep us in there as they were making four tough shots. We got some good wide-open looks and we missed them, but I thought that Ty has had two really good games in a row and Isaiah as well. They just kept us in there. And I really liked De’Andre Hunter as well. He gave us a nice lift with an offensive rebound put-back and a nice transition bucket at the end of the half. Those things are all important in that game. Again, we defended and shot pretty well in that first half, they just hit some tough shots. Ty was really sharp and really good. Assists to turnovers was really solid as well.”