Long regarded as the most unforgiving defense in the country under Coach Tony Bennett, the Virginia men's basketball team's "pack line" wilted trying to guard No. 2 Duke on Saturday evening. Suddenly, Williamson came out of nowhere to swat the shot into the crowd - jumping from well inside the arc to close out on the attempt.
No. 4 Duke defeated No. 2 Virginia, 69-63, in Charlottesville on January 31, 2015; No. 2 Virginia beat No. 4 Duke, 65-63, in Cameron last season (January 27); No. 1 Duke beat No. 4 Virginia, 72-70, on January 19 at Cameron. Kyle Guy and Ty Jerome lead Virginia in scoring with 16 points each.
"That really sets the tone for us and we played defense today as well", Barrett said of the fast start that saw him make five 3-pointers before the game was 12 minutes old, helping Duke quiet a sold-out John Paul Jones Arena with the host Cavaliers already trailing 29-15.
Center Jay Huff came off the bench to provide a lift for the Cavaliers early in the second half.
"Whenever they kind of had a run, one of our guys answered", Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski said.
Duke's Most Top-5 Vs. Top-5 GamesSaturday's game marks the Blue Devils' fourth AP top-5 vs. top-5 game this season - the most played by a Duke team before March 1 in history...
Duke has recorded a steal on 13.9 percent of opponents' possessions - best percentage in the NCAA. The Cavaliers were ranked No. 4 in the country when they visited top-ranked Duke on January 19. Saturday's game marks the third consecutive meeting, and fourth in the all-time series, that Duke and Virginia are meeting with each team ranked in the AP top five... Virginia is putting up 72.9 points per game on offense this season while shooting 47.7 percent from the field. Duke's home games in this stretch are back-to-back rivalry match-ups versus NC State and No. 8 North Carolina...
"We knew we were capable of shooting", Reddish said. "I practiced off and on all week, and I practiced pretty much the whole time on Friday, and I felt all right".
The first half also included a head-to-head collision between De'Andre Hunter and Mamadi Diakite that sent Diakite, a starting forward, tumbling to the court along the baseline by the Duke bench.
Poor 3-point shooting cost Duke in a 95-91 overtime loss to Syracuse.