Virginia basketball had a 10-game winning streak both overall and against William & Mary heading into Saturday’s matchup at John Paul Jones Arena. Both of those streaks were extended to eleven as UVA defeated their in-state opponent 72-40.
De’Andre Hunter got back on track, leading the Cavalier attack with 18 points after scoring just 14 points combined between the last 2 games. “I just tried to be more assertive this game,” Hunter said. When asked if the UVA game plan was to give Hunter more opportunities to score, head coach Tony Bennet answered, “We tried to put him in spots to be aggressive and he had the right mindset.”
Kyle Guy joined Hunter in double figures with 16 points, and Braxton Key recorded 9 points off the bench, making each of his three field goal attempts.
It was a game of runs, with Virginia (11-0) building a quick 25-8 lead in the first half. William & Mary (4-8) responded with a run of their own, which continued after halftime to make the score 34-28. The Tribe kept it close to that point just like South Carolina in UVA’s previous game, and just as in that game, UVA used another huge run of their own to put the game away, going on a 17-2 run.
William & Mary, a team that loves to shoot the three, shot a miniscule 2 of 20 from beyond the arc, and received 22 of its 40 total points from 6-10 forward Nathan Knight.
Virginia out-rebounded William & Mary 42-24 due in large part to the efforts of UVA’s starting backcourt. Ty Jerome hauled in 9 rebounds, while Kyle Guy grabbed 7 boards, both well above their season averages.
Fourteen Cavaliers saw the floor today for the first time this season, including former manager and SportCenter sensation Grant Kersey as well as redshirt-freshman Francesco Badocchi, who made his Virginia debut after spending the first part of the season away from the team for undisclosed medical reasons.
William & Mary became the 6th team this season to be held under 50 points by the Virginia defense.
Virginia’s final non-conference game of the season comes on the last day of the calendar year, as Virginia hosts Marshall on New Year’s Eve.