#6 Virginia Rallies to Beat Ohio St 63-61 in ACC/Big Ten Challenge
Virginia rallied from 16 points down to beat Ohio State
The 6th ranked UVa basketball team rallied from 16 points down Wednesday night to beat Ohio State in ACC/Big Ten Challenge 63-61.
Ohio State's JaQuan Lyle missed a long, desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer which would have won the game.
London Perrantes scored 15 of his team-high 19 points in the second half. Perrantes gave Virginia its first lead of the game at 39-38 on a jumper with 14:43 to go.
Virginia trailed by 12 at halftime.
UVa coach Tony Bennett was asked after the game about what he said to his guys at halftime. “We just had a pretty direct conversation with all of them, and what we stand for, what we built our program on, how it has to be, and not to kid ourselves. They were all challenged. I talked to London [Perrantes] as the senior point guard. They were all challenged and I thought they responded. It was really quick how they came out, and I think Ohio State was a little loose, but boy, we closed that gap awfully quick.”
The Cavaliers went on an 11-0 run to start the second half.
Virginia's 16-point deficit in the first half was Virginia's largest since trailing by 37 at Tennessee in December of 2013.
UVa coach Tony Bennett says, "“We got thoroughly outplayed in every way, shape and form in the first half. They beat us down the floor, they were the aggressor on the glass, they were just a tough-minded, talented team, and we could not stop them in any way, really. We were loose with the ball. Then, in the second half, we played. I have used that saying, ‘when you whip a donkey it will kick, but when you whip a thoroughbred it responds.’ Now, by no means are we thoroughbreds, but they responded. I got after London [Perrantes]. I said, ‘Come on. Let’s go in every way, shape and form,’ and he did, he played. We went with four guards in the lineup. At times, I thought that was a nice lift for us. We were able to guard better. Offense will come and go, but your defense can’t, and we violated something very important for ourselves. We got a little tougher defensively. We don’t score in the interior, and that showed up, but you still have to be able to get to the paint, and I thought in the second half we obviously were better. They are a solid ball club, well-coached, strong, quick, they have balanced scoring, all of that stuff.”
Devon Hall was the only other Virginia player scoring in double figures with 12. Virginia shot just 37.5 percent. The 61 points Ohio State scored were the most Virginia has given up all season.
The Cavaliers improve to 7-0 with the win. The 'Hoos extend their home winning streak to 24 straight games, the sixth longest streak in the country.
Virginia's next game is Saturday at home against #25 West Virginia.
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Marty Hudtloff is the Sports Director at WVIR-TV. He joined the NBC29 sports team in October of 2003. He has a degree in broadcast journalism from Bradley University. You can reach out to Marty via Email or Twitter.