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Monday Motivation: Exam Break Lull

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Quiet week around Grounds, but a lot of alumni made noise!

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

One side effect of being such an upstanding academic institution: exam breaks are taken seriously.

So, this week was quieter than Maryland fans after a baseball Super Regional as the Wahoos took a break from the field/court to hunker down in a book or hang out in Club Clemons.

Still, there are some highlights, so let's get to it.

Rapid Fire

-Women's Basketball were one of two teams in action (more on the other later) this week, and they took down Bowling Green without a problem. A crowd of over 10,000 fans filled JPJ for Field Trip Day to watch the Hoos cruise to a 68-39 victory. Over seven thousand of the game's attendees were teachers and students from local elementary and middle schools. Faith Randolph, Aliyah Huland El, and Lauren Moses all were in double digits for Virginia, who improved to 7-3 on the year.

Next up, the Hoos host Charleston Southern at 7pm on Friday.

-Ant Harris, the stellar Virginia defensive back who graduated last year, saw the field for the first time in the NFL as he started for the Vikings against the Cardinals on Thursday Night. Ant not only played extremely well, he led the team in tackles for the game with eight. Keep it up, Ant!

-Speaking of former players (always Wahoos)...the ageless Heath Miller had an outstanding day Sunday as the Steelers defeated the Bengals 33-20. Heeeeeeath hauled in 10 catches for 67 yards. His 10 receptions matched a career-high, and put him in the record books (again) for the Steelers:

-Denny McCarthy, David Pastore, and Kyle Stough, all former Virginia golfers, earned status for 2016 on the Web.com Tour. McCarthy gained exempt status, while Pastore and Stough both earned conditional (limited) status on the Web.com Tour, which is the PGA Tour's official developmental circuit.

-Courtney Bartholomew and Leah Smith, members of the top-ranked Swimming and Diving team, contributed to Team USA taking first place in the Mutual of Omaha Duel in the Pool meet. Both swimmers were outstanding as Bartholomew was part of the world-record setting 4x100 meter relay and Smith won the 800m free in a time of 8:10.03, which was good enough to register as the fastest in the world this year in that event.

-New Football head coach Bronco Mendenhall added former ECU head coach Ruffin McNeill to the Virginia staff as the assistant head coach. So, we now have a Bronco and a Ruffin. Excellent. Also, Marques Hagans was kept on staff as the wide receivers coach.

-Women's Soccer player Emily Sonnett was named a finalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy after her stellar senior season. Sonnett also joined fellow Wahoos Becky Sauerbrunn and Morgan Brian on the field Sunday night in the USWNT's game against China. #futbolschool

-On the Men's Soccer side, Todd Wharton was named to the NSCAA All-South Region Team for his performance this season. The fourth year midfielder played an impressive 1,673 minutes of a possible 1,680 this season for the Wahoos.

-The Men's Lacrosse team came in ranked No.7 and the Women's Lacrosse team at No.9 in their respective pre-season Inside Lacrosse rankings. Both teams start February 13.

HOO-mongous Win

-The No.10 Men's Basketball team took down No.14 West Virginia in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday. The Hoos struggled with the press initially, but a strong first half from Anthony Gill (who finished with 20 points, 12 rebounds) kept them within six at the half.

The second half? Well that was all UVA. Virginia outscored the Mountaineers 40-18 over the last 20 minutes of the game, and got a huge boost from point guard London Perrantes. Perrantes had no shot attempts (and therefore no points) in the first half as he showed some rust from missing two games. Why did he miss two games, you ask? Well, London was recovering from an appendectomy he got just NINE days prior to the matchup with WVU. Yep. Nine days. He recovered well enough to find his rhythm in the second half, scoring 13 points (including three three-pointers) to give Virginia the edge they needed.

Isaiah Wilkins provided a good lift, and Darius Thompson had another solid game. Oh, and Malcolm is just awesome. Virginia shot 73% in the second half, and 68% for the game as the defense looked their best yet.

While on exam break, Coach Bennett's squad managed to find some time to do some good. The Wahoos held a shoe drive to benefit children in need in the Dominican Republic, collecting over 100 pairs of shoes to donate. Well done, guys.

Next up, Virginia hosts No.9 Villanova on Saturday at noon.