Recap: Virginia vs. Miami-Florida
Charlottesville, VA (SportsNetwork.com) - There was no looking ahead for the 12th-ranked Virginia Cavaliers, who ran their win streak to 12 games with a 65-40 drubbing of Miami-Florida behind London Perrantes' career-high 15 points.
Perrantes didn't miss a shot in the rout, going 4-for-4 from 3-point range and 5-for-5 overall while also hitting his lone free throw in the Cavaliers' tune- up for Saturday's huge ACC showdown with No. 4 Syracuse at John Paul Jones Arena. Virginia (24-5, 15-1 ACC) currently holds a 1 1/2-game lead on the Orange for first place in the conference.
"He got some good looks, and I have seen him shoot the ball well," said Cavaliers head coach Tony Bennett of Perrantes. He played a very good game. We need that - different guys stepping up at different times on this team is what has made us the most successful."
Malcolm Brogdon also had 15 points for a Cavaliers squad that had its trademark tough defense in peak form as well, limiting the Hurricanes to a measly 12-of-46 (26.1 percent) success rate from the field and an 0-of-12 showing on 3-pointers.
"We definitely wanted them focused on the game tonight," said Bennett. "I thought we played solidly. We had to make Miami earn it and contested most of their shots. I think our guys had the right mindset."
Erik Swoope and Rion Brown finished with 13 and 12 points, respectively, for Miami (14-14, 5-10).
Neither team shot better than 33 percent during a slow-paced opening half, but Perrantes led Virginia on a 19-7 run that sent the Cavaliers ahead to stay. The freshman point guard accounted for the first six points of the surge, then later capped it by feeding Darion Atkins for a dunk that staked UVa to a 24-15 lead with three minutes left in the period.
Perrantes also closed out the stanza on a strong note, burying a 3-pointer with 48 seconds left to put the Cavaliers up by a 27-20 count at the intermission. Virginia went 5-of-10 from beyond the arc for the half and ended 9-of-16 on long-distance tries.
The Cavaliers broke the game open early in the second half, putting together a 13-2 spurt that featured two more Perrantes treys to extend the margin to 43-25 with 12:31 to play. The Hurricanes were held without a basket over the course of the run, a drought of more than five minutes.
"We couldn't score easily tonight," Miami head coach Jim Larranaga stated. "We had some good looks and they didn't fall for us. We were in a hole that we couldn't dig ourselves out of - the credit goes to them. Virginia makes you take difficult shots."
Miami's offensive woes continued over the remainder of contest, with the Canes hitting on a woeful 4-of-21 shots in the second half as Virginia increased its advantage. A late 12-3 burst, ignited by five straight points from Joe Harris ended any hopes of a Hurricanes' comeback and had the Cavaliers ahead by a 65-38 score with under two minutes to play.Game Notes
The win was Bennett's 100th at Virginia (100-58) as well as the Cavaliers'
17th straight at home in ACC play, breaking a school record previously held
from 1980-82 ... The Cavs assured themselves no worse than a No. 2 seed in
the upcoming ACC Tournament ... Perrantes' previous career best was 14
points, set at Florida State on Jan. 4 ... Harris went 3-for-5 from 3-point
range in an 11-point, five-assist effort.