Augusta Free Press

#2 Virginia builds big lead, holds it, defeating Syracuse

Second-ranked Virginia had been in this position before, up big over Syracuse, knowing what was to come: a literal full-court press. But this time, the ‘Hoos were able to beat the press, and beat the Orange, winning 59-44 on Saturday in front of more than 27,000 fans in the Carrier Dome.

UVA (22-1, 11-0 ACC), which has now won 14 straight games, used a late 11-0 run to lead 31-21 at the half.

As expected, Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim went to a full-court press to try to break Virginia’s rhythm, but it didn’t work this time around.

A 12-0 Cavs’ run over a 6:30 stretch of the second half pushed the margin to 21. Syracuse (15-8, 4-6 ACC) would get as close as 11 late, on an Oshae Brissett jumper with 2:48 left, but then went scoreless the rest of the way.

De’Andre Hunter came up big again off the bench, scoring 15 points on 5-of-6 shooting in 28 minutes of floor time. Hunter, a redshirt freshman, also scored 15 points in Virginia’s 68-61 win over Syracuse in Charlottesville last month.

Hunter also had six assists.

Kyle Guy had 14 points. Mamadi Diakite was also big off the bench, scoring 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting.

Ty Jerome had six points and six assists for UVA, which shot 43.9 percent from the floor (23-of-47) and 30.4 percent from three-point range (7-of-23).

Syracuse got 15 points from Tyus Battle and 11 points from Frank Howard, but the two combined to shoot just 10-of-34 from the floor.

The Orange shot 33.3 percent for the game (17-of-51) and 19 percent from three-point range (4-of-21).

Team Notes

Player Notes