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This time, Virginia gets upset before the NCAA tournament even starts

March 15 at 11:11 PM

Virginia heart Jay Huff had a transparent trail to the basket overdue in the second one part towards Florida State on Friday when ahead Mfiondu Kabengele, apparently out of nowhere, swooped in to dam the 7-footer’s layup try into the fingers of Florida State teammate Trent Forrest.

The display of athleticism at the a part of the Seminoles encapsulated a making an attempt night time for top-seeded Virginia, which misplaced within the ACC event semifinals, 69-59, to an opponent it had crushed by means of 13 issues to open convention play 3 months in the past.

This time, the Cavaliers (29-Three) have been nearly powerless to forestall No. four seed Florida State (27-6), which used its substantial duration at each place to finish Virginia’s nine-game successful streak and deny the ACC common season champions a shot at a 2nd immediately convention event name.

“They’re an excessively athletic crew, very lengthy, and it did disrupt us a bit bit,” Virginia guard Kyle Man mentioned. “It’s very obtrusive what we wish to repair, and we’ll be in a position come subsequent week.”

By way of then, Virginia may have realized its opponent and vacation spot within the NCAA event, however till the Cavaliers play once more, they’ll have plentiful time to stew over permitting the Seminoles to shoot 56.Five %. Best Duke shot a better proportion (57.eight) towards the rustic’s top-ranked outfit on the subject of defensive potency.

Right through its contemporary successful streak, Virginia had authorized just one opponent to shoot upper than 40 %.

“They have been simply the harder crew this night,” Cavaliers level guard Ty Jerome mentioned. “Extra bodily, it all.”

The Seminoles will play the winner of Friday’s overdue Duke-North Carolina semifinal.

Jerome’s non-public misfortunes persisted in the similar development, Spectrum Middle, the place Virginia ultimate season turned into the primary No. 1 seed in NCAA event historical past to lose to a No. 16 seed following a shocking dissatisfied by means of Maryland-Baltimore County, 74-54.

The junior shot four of 13 towards Florida State, together with 2 of nine from past the arc, one sport after going 1 for 11 in Thursday’s 76-56 win towards North Carolina State within the quarterfinals.

In 3 video games at Spectrum Middle, Jerome has shot 11 for 40 and simply four for 24 from three-point vary.

“I don’t know. Every now and then the ball doesn’t move in,” Jerome mentioned. “Simply return, get again to Charlottesville, get again within the gymnasium and get in a position for our subsequent sport.”

A number of the Cavaliers “Large 3” of Man, Jerome and De’Andre Hunter, handiest Hunter (team-high 13 issues) shot a minimum of 50 % towards the Seminoles, whose measurement benefit and jumping skill all over their deep roster helped produce a 35-20 margin in rebounding.

Overdue within the sport, Florida State two times accrued offensive rebounds, taking precious day off the clock and fighting the Cavaliers from most likely staging a rally.

Even if the Cavaliers did acquire ownership, Florida State pressured just about desperation heaves with the shot clock winding down, with Jerome and Huff each lacking badly on three-point makes an attempt.

“You get into this a part of the yr, the postseason, and the protection cranks up,” Virginia Trainer Tony Bennett mentioned. “The physicality will increase, and most likely the sport even slows down some, and so that you’ve were given to knock down pictures whilst you get them. We performed a crew that used to be superb defensively.”

Virginia led handiest in brief in the second one part, its ultimate benefit at 45-44 with 13:28 to play. However the Seminoles spoke back by means of reeling off a 16-Five run, resulting in a timeout from Bennett.

The nearest the Cavaliers got here within the ultimate mins used to be inside of 65-59, however Kabengele made each ends of a one-and-one, and Terance Mann punctuated the triumph with a two-handed dunk, giving Florida State a crack at its first ACC event championship since 2012.

“We develop from this revel in,” Bennett mentioned. “We had some probabilities to win the sport. I believe we went up one, however Florida State performed neatly. They defended neatly. They have been sound, and this night they have been the harder crew, or extra bodily. They’re bodily that approach.”

Seminoles reserve guard David Nichols particularly used to be in a position to take advantage of his matchup towards diminutive Virginia guard Kihei Clark, a freshman. Nichols again and again subsidized down Clark at the low block to sink brief jumpers.

Nichols ended with a game-high 14 issues, making 6 of eight pictures. The senior entered the sport capturing 38.Five % and scored simply 5 issues within the first assembly between the groups on Jan. Five at John Paul Jones Enviornment.

Right through an 11-1 Seminoles run in the second one part, Nichols made 3 consecutive box objectives, as soon as even scoring on Hunter, the ACC defensive participant of the yr and projected NBA lottery select who has drawn comparisons to Toronto Raptors ahead Kawhi Leonard, the most effective two-way avid gamers on the planet.

“It used to be glaring that our children have been actually locked in for this sport, and a large number of this is because we’ve this sort of super quantity of admire for the process that Tony does and the legacy he’s constructed at Virginia,” Seminoles Trainer Leonard Hamilton mentioned of the ACC trainer of the yr. “It used to be tough. We performed a large number of guys.”

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