The #9 Virginia Cavaliers rebounded from their heartbreaking loss to #1 Villanova with a 71-48 win over in-commonwealth rival Virginia Tech. Devon Hall led the Hoos with a career high 17 points and finished one rebound shy of a double. Isaiah Wilkins finished with 15 points and nine rebounds. Virginia Tech’s Seth Allen led the Hokies with 12 points. With the win, Virginia improved to 17-4 and kept pace with UNC in the ACC at 7-2.
Virginia led the entire game as the Hoos looked comfortable both offensively and defensively. For the game, the Cavaliers shot 46.3% from the field and 31.3% from three while the Hokies shot just 35.7% (15% from three).
Virginia Tech failing to score 55 points means the Hoos triggered the Pack Line Pledge.
The Hoos got out to a hot start, jumping out to a 10-0 lead before the Hokies scored their first basket. Isaiah Wilkins continued his ridiculously strong play as he scored five of Virginia’s first 10 points and had 11 points in the first half on perfect 5-for-5 shooting. Devon Hall chipped in nine points, and London Perrantes and Kyle Guy each had five in the first half.
Virginia led 35-21 at the half, and the Hoos moved the ball well around Tech’s zone defense, assisting 10 of 13 first half baskets. Virginia shot 44.8% from the floor (25% from three) in the first half and held Virginia Tech to just 27.8% from the floor with seven turnovers (just two assists). The Hoos had seven offensive rebounds in the first half (four by Wilkins) as they out-scored the Hokies 10-0 on second chance points. Neither team recorded a fast break point in the first half.
Early in the second half, Virginia led by as many as 19, but the Hokies brought it to within 11 points with eight minutes remaining. Crucial buckets by Hall and Perrantes halted Virginia Tech’s 8-0 run, and the Hoos never looked back as they cruised to victory in front of a raucous home crowd.
Despite being down over 20 points, Buzz Williams left his starters in to press Virginia’s subs with under a minute left.
Next up, the Hoos head to Syracuse on Saturday with an opportunity to avenge the soul-crushing Final Four loss from last season. The Orange needed overtime to win 100-93 at NC State in a high-offense, no-defense game.