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Women’s Basketball: Virginia notches first win since pandemic

UVA women’s basketballVirginia got its first win since Feb. 27, 2020, on the road at Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday, a 60-48 final.

Grad student guard Amandine Toi led all scorers with 20 points, going 4-of-9 from three-point range. Junior forward Camryn Taylor scored 17 points with nine rebounds. Grad student center Eleah Parker led the defensive efforts with 12 rebounds.

Lily Wahinekapu led Fullerton (2-3) with 13 points.

The Cavaliers (1-4) opened the game on a 6-0 run, on three baskets from Taylor. After Fullerton found its offensive flow, the two teams traded baskets in the period with Toi closing out the first period with a steal and a fast break that gave UVA a 16-12 advantage.

Fullerton tied the game with 7:50 remaining in the second on a step-back jumper. The Titans took a 22-20 lead with 5:02 left in the half. Toi answered 16 seconds later with a three on the opposite end that ignited an 8-0 run capped by a three from Miller to put UVA ahead 28-22. After the Titans narrowed the gap to four, Toi hit a three pointer with a minute left in the period to put the Cavaliers ahead 33-27 at the break.

Virginia built up a double-digit advantage on a Taylor layup with 6:35 left in the third. A steal and a fastbreak layup from Toi that built UVA’s advantage to 12 was the only scoring by either team in a five and a half minute span. Virginia headed into the fourth quarter with a 44-32 lead.

The Titans started the fourth quarter hot, making four baskets in the first 2:00, with a three-pointer from Wahinekapu cutting the lead to five, 46-41. Back-to-back three-pointers from Toi stopped the Titan run. Toi added a jumper from just inside the arc to make it a personal 8-0 run, giving the Cavaliers a 54-41 lead with six minutes left in the game. Taylor had an and-one with 2:10 remaining that made it a 57-46 game.

Virginia held on to secure their first win of the season.

“It feels really, really good to get our first one,” UVA coach Tina Thompson said. “The kids are really excited. They fought hard for this one from start to finish. We executed, stuck to our game plan, our schemes defensively and executed well offensively. This is the potential we’ve been talking about. What we were not doing before, we came out and we did that tonight. So really, really proud of our kids.

“We started pounding ball in the inside, being able to use our size and then they defensively tried to take that away, kind of sitting on our post. Amandine started us off with a great shooting from the outside. So just a real team and group effort for sure.”