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No. 3 men’s basketball crushes Notre Dame on the road, 82-55

Five Cavaliers scored in double figures in a dominant victory for Virginia

<p>Redshirt sophomore guard De'Andre Hunter led all scorers with 19 points.</p>

Redshirt sophomore guard De'Andre Hunter led all scorers with 19 points.

Virginia defeated Notre Dame in comprehensive fashion Saturday afternoon in South Bend, Ind. Five Cavaliers players scored in double figures as Virginia cruised to a 82-55 victory. Redshirt sophomore guard De’Andre Hunter had seven rebounds and led all scorers with 19 points. 

The Cavaliers (18-1, 6-1 ACC) outplayed the Fighting Irish (11-9, 1-6 ACC) from start to finish, leading by double digits from 10:49 in the first half on. They controlled the tempo offensively and defensively and had just two turnovers on the day.

Virginia started the game on a 12-0 run, with Notre Dame starting the game 0-9 from the field. Junior forward Mamadi Diakite played a big role in the run, with six points to start off the contest.

The Fighting Irish cut the Cavaliers’ lead to single digits, 16-7, on a contested three-pointer from freshman forward Nate Laszewski, but Virginia junior transfer guard Braxton Key responded immediately with an emphatic dunk.

That was the pattern in the first half, with Notre Dame unable to make a sizable dent in Virginia’s lead.

The Fighting Irish went to a zone, but the Cavaliers took it apart with ease. Hunter made some great plays in the center of the zone, driving to the rim and creating shots for his teammates. He finished with 10 first-half points and two assists.

Junior guard Kyle Guy got going later in the half. He made a contested three-pointer rolling off a screen to make it 35-17 Virginia with 3:56 to play in the half. Guy led the Cavaliers in scoring in the first half with 15 points on 3-4 shooting from three.

Virginia went into the half with a comfortable 42-25 lead. The Cavaliers shot 55.9 percent from the field in the first half.

Notre Dame got off to a hot start offensively in the second half. Junior forward John Mooney hit a couple of threes and had the Fighting Irish within 12 points — 54-42. Virginia was forced to call a timeout.

From then on, it was all Virginia.

Junior guard Ty Jerome knocked down a long three to make it 58-42, sparking the Cavaliers on a 23-5 run to extend their lead to 30 points, 77-47.

Jerome had a dynamic game, finishing with 13 points, six assists and nine rebounds — tying a career-high.

All kinds of players were getting it done for Virginia. Freshman guard Kihei Clark finished with a career-high 12 points, and Diakite tied for his career-high in blocks with four. Diakite also had 10 points and seven rebounds — his second consecutive game in double figures.

The Cavaliers remain on the road for their next matchup — a high stakes contest against N.C. State, a ranked opponent. Tip-off is set for Tuesday at 7 p.m. The game will be aired on ESPN2.