As a result of the Virginia Cavaliers’ ten-point win against the Virginia Tech Hokies last night, fifth year point guard Kihei Clark is now officially the winningest player in UVA men’s basketball history. Having been a part of 111 wins, Clark passes Mamadi Diakite (who had 110 from 2017-2020) for the record while also passing Diakite for most wins against ACC competition with 65.
Scoring 20 points and adding five assists on the night, Clark registered his 61st game in his career and is now 29th all-time in points for Virginia while also furthering his push to pass John Crotty for the UVA all-time assists record. Sitting at 640 career helpers, Clark is only 43 away from tying Crotty. With 12 regular season games remaining and at least two postseason contests as well, the Californian only needs to average 3.1 assists per game to pass Crotty. For context, he’s averaging a career high 5.9 per game this season.
In addressing his record, Clark called back to what Tony Bennett said after passing Terry Holland for most wins as a coach of the men’s team just a few weeks, saying that “it’s a team award,” as he acknowledged that “with the players that I’ve been playing with from my first year up until now, I’ve played with some great guys so it means a lot to just be in that conversation.”
While Clark wouldn’t take individual credit, his head coach gave it to him. Bennett emphasized how “he’s such a competitor, Kihei is. A guy his size doesn’t get to where he is without having a fierce side of him.” Bennett did note, with a smile and a chuckle, that “there has to be an asterisk by that because he’s getting five years and [his former players including Diakite] only got four.” Notably, Clark has played 11 more career games than Diakite did.
Nevertheless, Bennett continued by saying that Clark is nothing if not “a competitor, he wants to win and that’s what he’s done most of his career,” while “he’s still coachable.” He closed his comments stating that “it’s good to have him back for sure, I’m glad he made that decision.”
As are we Coach, as are we.