Basketball, Sports

Veterans lead Miami down the stretch

 

 

 

 

(Photos by Zach Beeker and Nick Gangemi)

The Hurricanes have survived their share of dramatic endings this season, clinching last-second victories at N.C. State and Clemson. But Tuesday night’s narrow home win over Virginia might have raised the bar even higher.

The second-ranked Canes pulled out a 54-50 victory to move to 22-3, which includes a perfect 13-0 ACC record.

While the visiting Cavaliers only held the lead for a total of 21 seconds, they were able to tie the game at 50 with 14 seconds remaining. On the ensuing possession, Shane Larkin moved off two consecutive ball screens and connected with a wide-open Reggie Johnson underneath the basket, who put in the go-ahead lay up as the BankUnited Center crowd erupted.

The spectators did not even have time to process the last play before Durand Scott swiftly stole Virginia’s inbound pass with four seconds to go. Scott was then fouled and sent to the line where he sunk both of his free throws, sealing the deal for the victorious Canes.

“Every year we play Virginia it’s always a battle,” said Johnson, who came off the bench to record eight points and seven rebounds. “I mean, ever since I’ve been here … that’s always a war.”

Rion Brown scored 10 and Larkin added 11 on a night the Canes struggled mightily from beyond the arc, finishing 1-for-7 for the game. Meanwhile, Virginia’s Joe Harris led all players with 16 points.

After only scoring two points in the first half, Larkin found his groove late, scoring a timely basket, sinking clutch free throws and dishing out the key assist to Johnson.

“He’s got the whole package: 11 points, six assists, one turnover,” Virginia coach Tony Bennett said of Larkin. “And that sixth assist was obviously a good one, but so quick, and our game plan was really … to try to not let him get in the lane, and as hard as we tried, he still got in there at times. But he has a good feel, and I love his change of pace. He just has poise out there that you need in that lead position.”

Several other Hurricanes also contributed strong poise and mental toughness.

“These guys have been through an awful lot, and they’ve been very hungry,” coach Jim Larranaga said. “You heard them say how hard they’ve worked, and they feel like they’ve earned this. Nothing’s been given to them. None of these wins have certainly been given to them. They’ve had to earn every victory.”

Miami will travel to Wake Forest for a 1 p.m. matchup with the Demon Deacons on Saturday.

February 21, 2013

Reporters

Patrick Riley

Contributing Sports Writer


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

They’ve earned their first 10-win season since 2003. Now all they need are two more victories for a ...

It became very clear, as soon as University of Miami coaches began recruiting Lonnie Walker IV, that ...

A six-pack of UM football notes: ▪ After UM’s 44-28 victory against Virginia on Saturday, Cavaliers ...

The Atlantic Coast Conference Championship Game, featuring the Coastal Division champion Miami Hurri ...

As Miami fans await the newest College Football Playoff rankings on Tuesday night — the Hurricanes c ...

The 41st annual conference on the Caribbean and Central America held a special program at the Univer ...

The Finker-Frenkel Legacy Foundation gift will establish the Business Plan Competition Endowed Fund. ...

C. David Naylor, a UM Presidential Scholar and public health policy expert, provided insight into he ...

A cohort of five religious leaders from Miami, including a rabbi and imam from the University of Mia ...

Hollywood actress and star of the hit BET series Being Mary Jane gets real about gender, race and co ...

Erykah Davenport scored 16 points and grabbed a career-high 19 rebounds, as the Miami women's b ...

Miami defensive coordinator Manny Diaz was selected as one of 15 semifinalists for the Broyles Award ...

Former Miami football players Ronnie Walker and Todd Stanish are grateful to be able to celebrate an ...

The neutral-site game is a homecoming for freshman guard Lonnie Walker IV. ...

The University of Miami volleyball team will travel to Georgia Tech and Clemson this week for the fi ...

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.