No. 16 Virginia rides hot shooting to win over Davidson

Johnson, Hall top 20 points as Cavaliers overcome early deficit

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Senior guard Nigel Johnson scored 22 points in a 80-60 Virginia win over Davidson Saturday afternoon. 

Richard Dizon | Cavalier Daily

An almost two-week break from the court for the No. 16 Virginia men’s basketball team ended on Saturday as they welcomed Davidson to John Paul Jones Arena. Despite a sluggish start, the Cavaliers (9-1) kicked off their rust and cruised to an 80-60 win over the Wildcats (4-4).

The long finals break allowed Virginia to come into Saturday’s matchup well-rested, but the team took some time to adjust to the fast-paced offense of Davidson. A hot start from beyond the arc for the Wildcats gave them an early 14-6 advantage before the 11-minute mark in the first half. 

Once Virginia graduate guard Nigel Johnson checked into the game, however, momentum began to swing the Cavaliers’ way. Johnson’s tenacity in transition and stout defense put Virginia right back into the game. The Cavaliers took a 37-29 lead into halftime on the strength of 14 points and three steals from Johnson off the bench.

Virginia opened the second half strong and never looked back, with other players getting hot from the field. Senior guard Devon Hall paced the Cavalier offense with 12 points in the first 10 minutes of the half to keep Davidson out of striking distance. Once he cooled down, sophomore guard Kyle Guy solidified the victory with 14 big points down the stretch, overcoming a tough first half.

The guard trio of Johnson, Hall and Guy got hot at the right time for the Cavaliers as they fought through early struggles. Johnson led the game with 22 points, while Hall added a career-high 20 points and Guy chipped in 19. The three combined for all of the team’s 10 made baskets from deep as the Cavaliers shot over 50 percent from three-point range. 

Virginia returns to action on Tuesday night when they take on Savannah State at John Paul Jones Arena. 

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