Red-hot Cavs take on Hurricanes in Sunshine State
Coral Gables, FL (Sports Network) – A set of teams at completely different
ends of the ACC standings collide at the BankUnited Center tonight, as
the 24th-ranked Virginia Cavaliers take on the Miami-Florida Hurricanes.
The Cavs enter the game in a tie with North Carolina for first place at
9-3, while Miami resides at the bottom of the standings with a record of just
3-9. The Cavs are red-hot at the moment as well, winning two straight and nine
of their last 10 outings. Miami, on the other hand, has struggled greatly of
late, losing eight its past nine contests. On Saturday, Virginia outlasted
Florida State, 73-70, to improve to 18-7 overall, while Miami dropped to
10-16 following a 74-69 setback at Wake Forest on the same day. Tonight’s
game marks the seventh all-time meeting between the two schools, with each
winning three prior encounters.
Miami won the first three meeting in the series, but Virginia responded
with a three-game winning streak of its own, including an 81-70 triumph
in an earlier encounter this season.
Opposing teams have found it difficult to slow down the Cavs this season, as
they are currently averaging a hardy 78.3 ppg on 44.1 percent shooting from
the field. Sean Singletary and J.R. Reynolds give Virginia one of the top
backcourt tandems in the league and they are currently tied for the team-lead
in scoring with 18.4 ppg apiece. Singletary also leads the club in assists
(4.8 apg) and steals (44), while Reynolds adds 4.0 rpg and 3.9 apg. Mamadi
Diane is the only other player on the roster averaging in double figures with
10.6 ppg. In the team’s last game, Singletary turned in 19 points, six
rebounds and six assists in leading the Cavs to a three-point win over Florida
State. Reynolds also had a productive game, as he posted 17 points, eight
rebounds and six assists. Virginia shot just 37.3 percent from the field, but
they made up for it by knocking down 12-of-26 three-point attempts.
Despite being slowed down by injuries this season, Miami has still been able
to produce a respectable 71.4 ppg. Jack McClinton leads the team with 16.3
ppg and he is shooting 44.0 percent from long range and 90.3 percent at the
foul line. Brian Asbury is next in line with 12.1 ppg and he is also posting
5.5 rpg and a team-best 40 steals. In the squad’s previous contest, McClinton
poured in 21 points on the strength of 6-of-13 shooting from long distance,
but it wasn’t enough for the Hurricanes in a five-point loss at Wake Forest.
Asbury added 11 points and eight boards for Miami, which shot a subpar 36.6
percent from the floor in the game.