The UVA women’s basketball team (5-1) earned a 74-61 victory over florida international (0-5) in the consolation final of the FIU Thanksgiving Classic Tournament on Sunday (Nov. 30) in Miami, Fla.
Virginia, which led the entire game, forced 25 FIU turnovers, scoring 31 points off the miscues, to rebound from Friday’s64-62 loss to Toledo in the tournament’s opening round.
“I am just really pleased how we came out today,” said Virginia head coach Joanne Boyle. “We didn’t play a perfect 40 minutes, we went into some lulls here and there, but we always responded. I thought we did a really good job of getting into the passing lanes today and being disrupting and forcing turnovers. We did a really good job of transition defense, which was a focus for us. I also had pretty balanced scoring.”
Virginia had four players finish the game with double-digit points, led by senior center Sarah Imovbioh (Abuja, Nigeria) who logged her fourth double-double of the season with 16 points and 10 rebounds while also matching a career high with five steals. Junior guard Faith Randolph (Derwood, Md.) scored 16 points, giving her 37 points in the tournament and earning her a spot on the All-Tournament team. Freshman guard Mikayla Venson (Arlington, Va.) had 12 points with a career-high five steals. Sophomore guard Breyana Mason (Woodbridge, Va.) scored 11 points.
The Panthers’ Kiandre’a Pound also had a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds.
Toledo defeated Arizona, 69-54, in the tournament championship game to win the team title.
Virginia started the game making its first seven shots, but went 10-of-26 (38.4 percent) the rest of the half. Venson scored six points in the final 36 seconds of the first period to send the Cavaliers into the break with a 37-25 lead.
Virginia started the second half with the same hot shooting, with the Cavaliers converting their first five field goal attempts to jump out to a 47-30 lead. After Virginia lead by 20 points, the Panthers mounted an 9-0 run to cut it down to a 61-50 deficit. Mason stopped the run by cutting baseline and converting a layup with 6:30 remaining. Both teams traded points through the end of the game with Virginia improving to 4-0 all-time against FIU.
The Panthers outrebounded the Cavaliers, 36-21. Virginia finished the game shooting 51.6 percent, going 32-of-62. florida international went 22-of-46 (47.8 percent). Virginia finished with 14 steals while FIU had three. The Cavaliers also blocked six shots with freshman forward Lauren Moses (Mount Holly, N.J.) knocking down three.
Virginia will travel to Champaign, Ill., to take on Illinois in the 2014 ACC/Big Ten Women’s Basketball Challenge onWednesday, Dec. 3 at 8 p.m. ET. The Cavaliers return home to host Delaware State on Saturday, Dec. 6 at 2 p.m. in the final game before the team breaks for final exams.
Single-game ticket prices for all home games are $10 for Reserved seating, $8 for adult General Admission and $6 for youth (18 & under), senior (60 & over) and UVa faculty/staff General Admission. Fans may purchase home game tickets through the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office online at VirginiaSports.com, by phone and in person. The Virginia Athletics Ticket Office is located in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium and open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Telephone purchases can be made by calling 1-800-542-UVA1 (8821) or locally at 434-924-UVA1 (8821).