January 4, 2020 / 9:22 PM / 20 days ago

No. 19 Virginia smothers Virginia Tech

Kihei Clark scored a career-high 18 points, Braxton Key produced 18 points and 10 rebounds, and No. 19 Virginia manhandled visiting Virginia Tech 65-39 in Atlantic Coast Conference action Saturday afternoon in Charlottesville.

Jan 4, 2020; Charlottesville, Virginia, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies guard Wabissa Bede (3) leaps to pass the ball as Virginia Cavaliers forward Mamadi Diakite (25) defends in the first half at John Paul Jones Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Virginia (11-2, 3-0) built a 13-point halftime lead with typically strong defense and was never seriously challenged in the second half. Virginia Tech (10-4, 1-2) hoped its offense could outmaneuver Virginia’s defense, but the Hokies shot 27.1 percent.

Virginia Tech’s 39 points marked their fewest in a game since they scored 33 in a loss to East Carolina in 1967.

The Hokies entered Saturday as the best 3-point-shooting team in the ACC at 39.4 percent. They were unable to shoot well from distance in this game, going 4 of 25 behind the arc (16 percent) against one of the top defenses in the country.

Landers Nolley II scored 18 points to lead the Hokies, including scoring their final 15 points of the first half. He made 7 of 16 field goal attempts, while his Virginia Tech teammates combined to shoot 6 of 32 from the field.

The Hokies’ 13 turnovers matched their 13 made field goals, one of many indications of how thoroughly Virginia’s defense dominated.

Clark made 5 of 9 shots from the field and was 7 of 8 from the foul line. He also had six assists.

Virginia never trailed and used its defense to slowly pull away. The Cavaliers allowed just 11 points in the game’s first 18 minutes and then gave up just six points in the first 6:42 of the second half to make sure Virginia Tech never mounted a rally. Virginia scored the game’s final seven points.

The Cavaliers also beat up Virginia Tech on the boards, 38-25. Mamadi Diakite had 10 rebounds for Virginia, and Kody Stattmann added eight boards while also scoring 10 points.

—Field Level Media

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