UVA Downs FSU in ACC Quarterfinals; Ends ACC Tourney Drought - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

UVA Downs FSU in ACC Quarterfinals; Ends ACC Tourney Drought

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Virginia Basketball's Joe Harris scored a game-high 20 points to lead the #6 Cavaliers to a 64-51 victory over Florida State in the quarterfinals of the 2014 ACC Tournament at the Greensboro Coliseum Friday.

This marks Virginia's first trip to the ACC semifinals since 1995 and ends the longest drought in ACC history.

Harris shot 58% from the field and 50% from beyond the arc. UVA's Anthony Gill had a stand out performance for the 'Hoos off the bench. Gill had 16 points, five rebounds and 2 blocks.

Coming into the match-up the Cavaliers had struggled in the ACC tournament. The Cavs were 0-4 in their last four ACC tournament appearances, but of course, that has all changed. 

The first seeded 'Hoos continue action Saturday when they host #5 Pittsburgh at 1 p.m. in the ACC semifinals in Greensboro.

"It felt good to hang on and run a little bit," said UVa's Justin Anderson. "Especially guys like Darion with that big time tip-slam. Anthony got a couple of dunks and Joey got some in-and-out three's. It's momentum swings and we want to make sure our defense dictated our offense. Even though it looked good on our offensive end, we must remember that all of that came from our defense."

The Cavaliers led by five at halftime, but pulled away after the break. The 'Hoos shot 48% from the field and forced 15 Florida State turnovers. 

"We really picked it up, especially in the second half," said Gill. "Our defense was a lot better. We kept them off the glass and that really helped us pull away and get that lead."

Pitt upset 15th ranked North Carolina in the ACC quarterfinals. Pitt led by as many as 20 in the second half before holding on for an 80-75 win.

Virginia and Pittsburgh should be a low scoring, hard fought battle on Saturday. When both of these teams met earlier in the season - neither team led the game by more than four points. 

UVa won that game by a last second Malcolm Brogdon three pointer - giving the 'Hoos a 48-45 win. 

"Joe was picked as Preseason All-League player," said Pittsburgh head coach Jamie Dixon. "The focus is on him but obviously some other guys have progressed and they've got balance going all the way through, so there's not just one guy."

UVa's London Perrantes said, "I feel like we still got that chip on our shoulder and feel like we still play that same game that we've been playing our game since Tennessee. That Tennessee fall that we had, but I think if we just keep playing our game we'll be good."

Tip-off is Saturday at 1 PM.
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