Just before the Virginia - N.C. State game, I said:
NC State has never won at John Paul Jones Arena in three tries. That's all the preview you need. Done and done. Book it.
Of course it was tongue-in-cheek, but on Tuesday night, the Wolfpack were unable to earn their first victory ever at JPJ, as they had very little answers for a hot-shooting trio of Cavaliers in freshman Joe Harris and seniors Mustapha Farrakhan and Will Sherrill, who combined for 48 points in Virginia's 69-58 win over N.C. State.
It was senior night for the Hoos, and senior walk-on-turned-scholarship-captain Sherrill started things off right with a pair of threes to spark a 16-0 Cavalier run over the first four and a half minutes to open the game. The Pack would answer with a 16-2 run of their own, but would never tie or gain the lead.
"Will makes us a better team when he is healthy," head coach Tony Bennett said. "I told both Will and Mustapha before the game that I was very proud of them. I told them that I have been a part of a lot of senior nights and that the best way they could give back would be to play their hearts out and I think they both did that tonight."
Sherrill would finish the night with a team-high 8 rebounds and a season-high 14 points, going 4-5 from three-point land. Farrakhan also had a good senior night, putting up 15 points of his own. As if the seniors were passing the baton to the future, freshman Joe Harris had an ACC career-high 19 points. Junior Sammy Zeglinski also joined the scoring party with 10.
"It was a great night," Sherrill said. "I was really happy to have my family here, and the ceremony before the game was great."
"It really hit me today, that this was my last home game," Farrakhan said after the game. "It went by so fast, and I keep telling the young guys to really cherish the opportunity to play. I really appreciate all the support I have gotten from my teammates and the fans who have seen me develop over the years."
Farrakhan, Sherrill and company will travel to Maryland on Saturday to seek redemption over a team that handled the Hoos pretty easily in Charlottesville earlier this season. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.