ORLANDO, Fla. — Furman’s Garrett Hien stole a long pass by Virginia’s Kihei Clark and JP Pegues made a 3 with 2.4 seconds remaining as the 13th-seeded Paladins upended the fourth-seeded Cavaliers, 68-67, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Amway Center Thursday afternoon (March 16).
Furman (28-7) only led for 3:28 of game time, but outscored Virginia (25-8) 41-35 in the second half. With the win, the Paladins advance to face the winner of No. 5 seed San Diego State and No. 12 College of Charleston.
The Cavaliers were led by Kadin Shedrick, who scored a team-high 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting and knocked down five of his six free throw attempts. With 13 rebounds, Shedrick notched his first and only double-double of the season. He also posted a game-high four blocks. Reece Beekman (14 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists) and Isaac McKneely (12 points, 5-10 FG) also scored in double figures for the Hoos.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Virginia led the Paladins 32-27 at the break after connecting on 46 percent of its shots, all of which came inside the arc, in the first 20 minutes of play. Jayden Gardner (8 points, 7 rebounds) kicked off the scoring 18 seconds in after which Furman never secured for the rest of the half. UVA leaped out to an 8-0 lead after starting 3-for-4 from the field and sinking a pair of free throws. The Cavaliers led by as many as 10 points [17-7] before the Paladins scored 15 of the next 21 points to shrink the UVA lead to one, 23-22. Another eight unanswered points by the Hoos broke up the Furman run and gave UVA a 31-22 lead with 2:34 to go in the first. UVA missed its last two field goal attempts and committed a turnover in the final 2:00 of the half as the Paladins closed in on the UVA lead to conclude the half.
The Cavaliers dominated the paint in the first half, out-rebounding Furman, 22-14, and out-scoring the Paladins inside, 16-8. Virginia only attempted two 3-pointers in the first stanza, missing on both tries. Furman, which went 4-for-14 from deep in the opening period, made just five of its 10 attempts at the line.
Beekman led all scorers at the break with 10 points on 3-for-4 shooting and went 4-for-5 at the charity stripe. He also pulled down five rebounds. Gardner had eight points and six rebounds at halftime. For the first time in UVA’s last 14 games, Shedrick made his first appearance in the starting lineup. He posted six of his 13 total rebounds in the first 20 minutes of play.
Less than five minutes into the…
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