The Virginia men's basketball team won its 15th straight game inside John Paul Jones Arena Sunday, as the Cavaliers blew out Georgia Tech 82-54.
UVA (19-8, 9-5 ACC)) led by 12 points at halftime, but Georgia Tech would come back in the 2nd half.
Robert Carter Jr. hit a three-pointer for the Yellow Jackets to cut the deficit to 45-40 with 14:16 left in the game.
The Wahoos would respond by scoring 16 of the next 17 points.
Back-to-back three-pointers by freshman Taylor Barnette ended the run, with Virginia leading 61-41 with 9:43 remaining.
Barnette tied his career high with nine points and three 3-pointers.
"It's just so loud, and everybody is cheering," says Barnette. "Your teammates are cheering for you, as well as everyone in the stands. It's so much fun. It gives you a lot more energy."
Senior point guard Jontel Evans says, "It's the fans. When we're in a slump here, they just rev it up, and get loud out of nowhere, and it just raises our level of play."
Evans had 10 points and eight assists.
Junior guard Joe Harris had 15 points, while junior forward Akil Mitchell had a game-high 18 points and eight rebounds.
Mitchell says, "We know what we need to do to pull away, and we know what we need to do to win games. It's just a matter of doing it. I felt like we really locked in on the defensive end, and got good shots offensively."
"Guys are clicking offensively," adds Evans. "They know when to be aggressive, and when not to. Coach Bennett puts confidence in me, to get to the paint, or shoot it, or find my teammates."
Head coach Tony Bennett adds, "They were unselfish, as we talked about serving each other, the way they played. Only five turnovers, and 15 assists, that makes for usually good offense."
UVA Athletic Director Craig Littlepage addressed the JPJ crowd after the game, thanking them for their support during the team's longest home winning streak since 1980-1983, and urging the fans to fill the arena for Thursday's game with #6 Duke.
Bennett says, "You certainly can feel the energy. That's what home court is all about. It's nice to see the crowd really rallying behind these guys, and it has made a difference, without a doubt."
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