Pittsburgh vs Virginia
When: 1:00 PM
ET, Saturday, March 15, 2014
Where: Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, North Carolina
Top-seeded Virginia plays a semifinal game in the ACC tournament for the first time since 1995 when it battles fifth seed Pittsburgh on Saturday in Greensboro, N.C. The Cavaliers showed why they lead the nation in scoring defense and won the league’s regular-season title, getting 20 points from Joe Harris in a workmanlike 64-51 victory over Florida State on Friday. Virginia will be tested by the Panthers, who have averaged 82 points in their first two ACC tournament games.
Malcolm Brogdon drilled a 3-pointer with less than one second left to give the Cavaliers a 48-45 victory at Pittsburgh on Feb. 2 in the only other meeting this season. Virginia held the Panthers to 31.9 percent shooting in that game and is allowing 55.3 points per contest overall. The Cavaliers must have an answer for 6-9 Talib Zanna, who grabbed a career-best 21 rebounds – two shy of the tournament record – in Friday’s 80-75 quarterfinal victory over North Carolina.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, ESPN, ACC Network
ABOUT PITTSBURGH (25-8): Zanna has been a force the last six games - averaging 15.8 points and 11.5 rebounds - scoring 19 on Friday after posting 17 in the second round. Sophomore point guard James Robinson was just as important Friday, recording a career-high 19 points. The Panthers must correct issues that led to almost blowing a 20-point lead against North Carolina and will look for leading scorer Lamar Patterson to play more like his 24-point effort in the second round than his 12-point, six-turnover outing Friday.
ABOUT VIRGINIA (26-6): It took the Cavaliers a little time to get going against Florida State, but their tireless defense forced 15 turnovers overall and allowed only 38.5 percent shooting in the second half. Harris’ 20 points matched his season high and he made 7-of-12 from the field after shooting 28.6 percent over his previous five contests. Anthony Gill’s 16 points Friday were his most in a game since Nov. 29 and leading scorer Malcolm Brogdon looks to respond after recording six – his first single-digit outing in an ACC game this season.
1. Virginia’s 26 victories are its most in a season since posting 29 during the 1982-83 campaign.
2. Pittsburgh is 9-2 in road or neutral-site games against ACC opponents during its first season in the league.
3. The Cavaliers have held 19 straight opponents to less than 50 percent shooting.
PREDICTION: Virginia 68, Pittsburgh 60
Stats and Records