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Virginia crushes Savannah State
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Virginia crushes Savannah State

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CHARLOTTESVILLE — Savannah State has begun the process of moving down from Division I to Division II athletics. The Tigers are taking their lumps on the way out the door.

Tuesday night against No. 13 Virginia was no different.

Sophomore guard Ty Jerome scored 17 points as U.Va. drilled Savannah State 78-47, the Cavaliers’ second-most lopsided win of the year.

“We have a small window to compete against these guys,” said Savannah State coach Horace Broadnax. “And if we don’t step through that window early, it can get out of hand and they can control the game from there.”

Senior guard Devon Hall hit a 3-pointer 24 seconds into the game, and Virginia (10-1) never trailed in its next-to-last nonconference game before league play.

U.Va. also got 10 points and five rebounds from junior center Jack Salt on a night when 11 Cavaliers scored.

“It doesn’t matter if we’re playing Savannah State or a top five team in the country,” said Jerome. “If we’re on the road or at home. It’s just a matter of, whenever you’re on the court, executing;, executing every play.”

Junior forward John Grant scored 22 points to lead the Tigers, though 13 came in the second half when the game was long decided. Grant went 7 for 12 from 3-point range.

Savannah State (3-11) already had played five top 25 opponents this season, losing all five by an average of 39.8 points. Tuesday, in front of a sparse, holiday crowd at John Paul Jones Arena, the beat went on.

It took U.Va. 24 seconds to score its first basket. It took Savannah State 4:43. The Tigers have lost four straight and fell to 0-4 against Power Five opponents.

Savannah State, which has taken the most 3-point shots in the nation, missed its first nine attempts from beyond the arc before junior Dexter McClanahan hit a 3-pointer with 5:47 left in the first half, trimming the Cavs’ lead to 31-10.

“We talked about being really alert and ready,” said U.Va. coach Tony Bennett. “You watch them and see, they can really hit 3s quickly. You have to be back in transition and quick to close out.”

Against the nation’s worst scoring defense, U.Va. led by 27 points in the first half, going up 37-10 with 3:37 left on a basket by redshirt freshman Jay Huff. That basket made Huff the 10th Cavalier to score in the first half. Virginia led 42-21 at the break.

In the second half, U.Va. took advantage of a 9:01 scoring drought by the Tigers to go on a 19-0 run.

The Cavaliers have one final nonconference tune-up, Friday night against Hampton, before opening ACC play on Dec. 30 at home against Boston College.

For the Tigers, who have lost games to Cincinnati, Wichita State, Texas Tech, Texas A&M, Baylor and now Virginia, things don’t get easier. They play at No. 2 Michigan State in a day game on New Year’s Eve.

“We don’t need to be in the ACC,” said Broadnax, who estimated his team had been paid between $80,000 and $90,000. “I’m glad that’s our last game (against) the ACC. So we’re going to move on to, I guess, the Big Ten and play Michigan State.”

FG FT Reb

SS M M-A M-A O-T A PF PT

Glenn 17 0-0 1-2 1-4 0 2 1

Dasent 21 1-5 0-0 0-1 2 0 2

McClanahan 23 2-9 2-2 2-2 0 1 8

Sellers 25 1-6 0-0 0-2 2 3 3

Jenkins 21 1-8 0-0 1-3 0 3 2

Orizu 21 1-3 0-0 2-7 0 3 2

Fenner 19 1-6 0-0 0-1 2 1 2

Grant Jr. 19 7-12 1-1 0-2 0 2 22

Cabeza 14 0-1 0-0 0-1 3 0 0

Evans 13 1-4 0-0 0-3 2 3 2

Dubose 6 1-3 0-0 0-0 0 0 3

Totals 200 16-57 4-5 6-26 11 18 47

Percentages: FG .281, FT .800. 3-Point Goals: 11-37, .297 (Grant Jr. 7-12, McClanahan 2-5, Sellers 1-2, Dubose 1-3, Cabeza 0-1, Evans 0-2, Fenner 0-2, Dasent 0-3, Jenkins 0-7). Team Rebounds: 5. Team Turnovers: 18 (15 PTS). Blocked Shots: 3 (Cabeza, Grant Jr., Orizu). Turnovers: 18 (Grant Jr. 3, Cabeza 2, Evans 2, Fenner 2, Jenkins 2, Sellers 2, Dasent, Dubose, Glenn, McClanahan, Orizu). Steals: 8 (Fenner 2, Orizu 2, Cabeza, Dasent, Evans, Glenn).

FG FT Reb

VIRGINIA M M-A M-A O-T A PF PT

Wilkins 15 1-2 0-0 2-7 2 0 2

Salt 17 4-4 2-4 4-5 1 0 10

Guy 22 3-10 0-0 1-1 0 1 8

Hall 20 3-6 0-0 0-3 3 1 7

Jerome 19 6-9 2-2 0-4 3 0 17

Hunter 23 1-5 7-8 0-3 2 0 9

Diakite 22 4-9 2-2 0-2 0 2 10

Johnson 20 1-4 0-0 0-3 5 2 2

Huff 16 3-4 0-2 1-6 0 5 6

Anthony 15 2-4 0-0 1-3 2 1 5

Katstra 4 0-0 0-0 0-1 0 0 0

Gross 4 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 2

Bartley 4 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0

Totals 200 29-58 13-18 9-38 18 12 78

Percentages: FG .500, FT .722. 3-Point Goals: 7-19, .368 (Jerome 3-3, Guy 2-7, Hall 1-2, Anthony 1-3, Hunter 0-2, Johnson 0-2). Team Rebounds: 4. Team Turnovers: 12 (23 PTS). Blocked Shots: 8 (Salt 3, Hall 2, Huff 2, Diakite). Turnovers: 12 (Johnson 4, Anthony 2, Hunter 2, Diakite, Huff, Jerome, Katstra). Steals: 7 (Anthony 2, Diakite, Hall, Hunter, Johnson, Wilkins).

Savannah St. 21 26 — 47

Virginia 42 36 — 78

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