Previewing Virginia

CLEMSON - When they last met two weeks ago, Virginia edged Clemson with a 64-61 win at John Paul Jones Arena.

WHAT: No. 22 Virginia at Clemson
WHERE: Littlejohn Coliseum (10,000) – Clemson, S.C.
WHEN: Tuesday, Feb. 14 (7:02 p.m.)
SPREAD: Clemson -1.5
TV: ESPNU (Carter Blackburn, Jay Williams)

The Cavaliers were led by Mike Scott and Joe Harris, who scored 23 and 19 points, respectively. As a team, Virginia shot at a 56 percent clip from the field.

On Valentine's Day, No. 22 Virginia will return the favor with a trip down to Clemson.

"We can't stop them all the time, but there are some things we can fix from the first game, like our transition defense. That wasn't great," said Tanner Smith, who scored 14 points for the Tigers in Charlottesville.

Despite the loss to the Cavaliers, Brad Brownell thought his team played well, aside from one critical stretch.

"We played really well at their place. I thought we had a great first half in the game," he said. "But, to Virginia's credit, they made plays down the stretch."

In the first eight minutes of the second half, Virginia went on a 23-8 run.

"Mike Scott was really good. Joe Harris made shots. It got away from us in the second half," Brownell said.

Scott went 8 of 11 from the field and 7 of 8 from the free-throw line while Harris knocked down 5 of 6 shots from behind the 3-point line.

"[Scott] is a guy who scores in a variety of ways," Brownell said. "His face-up jump shot is terrific. He makes shots in areas before you can double him, because he has a quick release…we need to at least slow in down a little bit."

By slowing him down, Brownell means cutting down on his efficiency at the offensive end.

"If he gets his numbers, we need those shot numbers to be higher. We need him to shoot a lower percentage. We can't have him make 8 out of 11," he said. "We need him to force a few. We need him to be uncomfortable a few times."

Smith, who thinks Scott is worthy of ACC Player of the Year honors, said there's another Virginia scorer they'll have to keep uncomfortable. Even though Sammy Zeglinski had five points on 2 of 8 shooting, there's no reason to believe he won't be able to catch fire in Littlejohn Coliseum.

"He's a great shooter. We're going to have to do a really good job. He's always active, always moving around," Smith said. "Anytime he can string together two or three 3's in a row and get them going."

PROBABLE STARTERS
Virginia (19-5, 6-4)
G #1 Jontel Evans (5-11, 188) - 6.5 PPG, 2.0 RPG
G #12 Joe Harris (6-6, 211) - 12.5 PPG, 4.1 RPG
G #13 Sammy Zelinski (6-1, 184) - 8.2 PPG, 3.2 RPG
F #23 Mike Scott (6-8, 237) - 17.1 PPG, 8.2 RPG
C #25 Akil Mitchell (6-8, 234) - 4.0 PPG, 4.1 RPG

PROBABLE STARTERS
Clemson (12-12, 4-6)
G #11 Andre Young (5-9, 170) - 13.6 PPG, 3.0 RPG
G #5 Tanner Smith (6-5, 210) - 11.3 PPG, 5.4 RPG
F #21 Bryan Narcisse (6-2, 225) - 3.0 PPG, 2.4 RPG
F #24 Milton Jennings (6-9, 225) - 9.5 PPG, 5.4 RPG
F #31 Devin Booker (6-8, 245) - 11.0 PPG, 6.9 RPG


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