Virginia fans are well aware of the magical story behind Virginia Basketball’s Grant Kersey. A manager-turned-walk-on, Kersey has dressed for home games this season for the No. 4 Cavaliers. He entered today’s game with Marshall with a perfect 2-for-2 from the field mark (1-for-1 from three) with no turnovers.
With the Cavaliers comfortably in control, Marshall kept full court pressuring the walk-ons and attempting to dunk on bench players. So when Virginia got the ball back with under 20 seconds left in the game and up 97-64, Kersey whipped the ball out to teammate Austin Katstra in the corner for a three-point attempt. The shot missed, but Kersey corralled the rebound, dribbled out to the three-point line, and heaved up a fadeaway three.
The shot gave Virginia 100 points for the first time under head Coach Tony Bennett, and put a fitting exclamation point on Bennett’s 300th career win.
“Well, I think he’s un-coachable,” Coach Bennett said with a laugh in the post game. “I was holding up my hands saying, ‘hold the ball’, so we’re going to have to have him run some extra wind sprints or something, come on.”
Kersey hit a three pointer against Coppin State, and had an assist and and-1 bucket against Morgan State earlier in the season. None of those got the reaction from the crowd that the latest shot did.
“Grant to me represents all those guys that have been managers in our program and the practice players,” Bennett stated, continuing, “...that’s kind of cool that there’s excitement with him and what he’s done.”
Dana O’Neil wrote up Grant’s legendary beginning to the season for the Athletic, and Coach Bennett knows Kersey is garnering some attention on social media.
“That’ll probably boost his...what’s that? Instagram followers? Ok, that’ll boost his Instagram followers.”