The 12th-ranked Virginia Cavaliers host the Syracuse Orange at John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, Virginia, in a Monday night ACC basketball matchup at 7 pm EST. Currently, the Cavaliers are favored by 6.5-points while the total stands at 130.5 points.
The Orange enter this contest on a 2-game win streak after picking up their 9th win of the year after taking out the Hokies of Virginia Tech at home Saturday by 18-points as the home team was able to pull away in the 2nd-half thanks to not only an efficient shooting night as a team, but 20 points from leading scorer Quincy Guerrier along with 18 from Marek Zolezaj. The Orange were also able to put in a huge defensive effort as well in giving up just 33% shooting to the Hokies along with 28% from deep. And despite going 2-4 ATS in their last 6 games, Syracuse has covered in each of their last 2 outings.
The Cavaliers also enter this game on a huge high as they have won 6-straight after being victorious on the road versus the Clemson Tigers last Saturday while following this up with a home victory over the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Saturday night as they overcame a 4-point halftime deficit to edge the road team in the 2nd-half behind another huge game from Sam Hauser along with Jay Huff, who led the team with 22 and 18 points, respectively. However, Virginia was unable to cover as 8.5-point favorites, yet their record stands at 4-2 in their last 6 games, overall.
And while Virginia has picked up wins in 4 of their last 5 meetings versus Syracuse, the Orange picked up an overtime road win in their last matchup January of last year while covering as 7-point dogs. Important to add that the Cavaliers have come up victorious in 3 of 5 at home versus the Orange, Syracuse is 4-1 against the number in these contests.
Syracuse lights it up offensively versus HokiesThe Orange have had little problems putting points on the board this year as they are averaging just under 80 points per game this season led by forward Guerrier (17 ppg, 10 rebs, blk), who not only led the team with 20 points versus Virginia Tech, but has also posted 2 double-doubles in his last 4 outings. In addition to this, the forward has also been a force on the defensive end as well in collecting a total of 11 blocks in the last 4 games for Syracuse, thus being critical in the team ranking in the top-30 in opponent field goal along with 3-point percentage this year.
Take it to 'em. 👊 pic.twitter.com/dCZsB8DNcd— Syracuse Basketball (@Cuse_MBB) January 23, 2021
Syracuse used a stellar defensive performance last January in their overtime win on the road over the Cavaliers as Virginia shot just 31% from the floor in the contest including converting on just 7 of 31 attempts from deep in addition to committing 15 turnovers. The Orange, on the other hand, was just as dismal in this area shooting 33%; However, they were able to hit a total of 12 treys, which ultimately tipped the scales in their favor in getting the win.
Aside from Guerrier, their offense has also been bolstered this year by frontcourt players Dolezaj (11 ppg, 6 rebs) along with Alan Griffin (16 ppg, 7 rebs, 2 blks), who are coming off efficient shooting nights versus the Hokies as well while ending with 18 and 15 points, respectively, with Griffin posting a double-double with 10 boards. Important to note, however, that Guerrier along with Dolezaj did not factor much into the outcome last January as the former went just 1-4 for 7 points while Dolezaj went only 1-2 from the free-throw line.
Virginia squeaks by Yellow Jackets at homeThe Cavaliers were able to rally in the second to outlast a 7-4 Georgia Tech team at John Paul Jones Arena led by their 2 playmakers in Hauser (15 ppg, 7 rebs) and 7'1" Huff 13 ppg, 6 rebs, 3 blks), who not only combined to go 16-23 from the field in the contest, but accounted for 6 of the team's 8 3-pointers as well. Important to add that Hauser recorded a block in the contest while Huff led the team with 5 rejections in the victory. In all, the Cavaliers are allowing just 59 points per game to opponents this season on 41% shooting (34% from long-range) while giving up an average of only 55 points during their 6-game win streak. In fact, aside from the Orange posting 63 points last January, the Cavaliers failed to allow 55 points to their conference foe in 3 games prior.
And while the defense continues to play outstanding, the Cavaliers, despite posting just 72 points per game this year, is very accurate from the floor ranking in the top-25 in field goal as well as 3-point percentage. Hauser and Huff are a huge reason for this as they are making at least 51% of their shots while connecting on 41% and 44% of their shots from the arc this season. In addition to this, guards Trey Murphy III (10 ppg) along with Kehei Clark (10 ppg, 4 ass) have also come up with solid performances throughout the year with Murphy III shooting over 50% from the floor also (51% from long-range).
Both Clark and Huff posted double-digits last January in their overtime loss, yet Clark struggled going just 4-14 from the floor along with 3-9 from deep for 13 points while Huff finished with 16 points and 10 boards to lead the team on 7-12 shooting.
Stats & Trends
- Orange are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
- Orange are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Cavaliers are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS loss.
- Cavaliers are 3-1 ATS in last 4 games.
While the Orange enter this contest on a high after picking up some wins recently, the fact is that despite their most recent win last year, their offense has struggled versus Virginia's solid defense in past matchups. Besides, the Cavaliers have been victorious against the spread in 3 of their last 4 meetings versus Syracuse while posting 55 points or less in 3 of those contests. In all, expect the Cavaliers to get a bit of payback after their overtime loss at home last January to pick up their 7th-straight win while covering for the 5th time in 7 games.