Harris & Mitchell Lead UVa Basketball to Best ACC Start in 4 YearsPosted: Updated:
The Virginia men's basketball team may have been welcomed into PNC Arena by a booing crowd but the Cavaliers handed NC State their worst loss ever since the Wolfpack began playing there back in 1998.
"The were really cold," said Bennett. "They were off. That helped. They couldn't buy a bucket." Akil Mitchell added, "Putting a whole game together was our challenge coming in. We wanted to make sure we stepped on the gas and kept it up."
The 'Hoos are off to their best ACC start in four years. Malcolm Brogdon said, "We see other ACC teams getting beat, and not winning ACC games.We know were in a really good position right now, but we want to make sure we stay in that position."
The entire team has turned it around after being pummeled by Tennessee. Bennett said, "Being humbled like that by Tennessee was a wake up call." Mike Tobey added, "We got blown out. We really came together as a team. We were like now this is ACC play, we've gotta step it up."
Since, seniors Joe Harris and Akil Mitchell have taken the reigns of the team. Harris said, "We made a conscious effort to inform the guys this is not the way we want to go out. This is not how we should be playing."
Bennett added, "It's their team. It's their time. It's their time and its time for them to lead."
"Coach Bennett he talked with us one-on-one," said Mitchell. "He let us know exactly what we needed to do to be successful. I think Joe's done a great job of that and I'm working at it everyday."
The Cavaliers will need Harris and Mitchell now more than ever as they get ready to take on Duke. The Blue Devils are 1-2 in the ACC after just being upset by Clemson on Saturday. The team knows Duke will be coming in with a huge chip on their shoulder.
Mitchell said, "We'll need just as much energy as we had tonight if not more. We'll need to execute at higher level than what we did tonight to be able to beat them."
Harris added,"I think we've really found our identity and what we need to do for us to be successful. We're just hoping to carry that over into Cameron."