An ACC battle is underway between Syracuse and No. 9 Virginia to kick off the Saturday slate, and the Cavaliers had the early edge at the halftime buzzer, 34-22. After the first period, Virginia owned a 12-point edge thanks to 22 points from its bench (Kyle Guy, nine; Mamadi Diakite, eight). And if you tuned in to see these two squads square off, you've probably seen Virginia methodically attacking Syracuse's vaunted 2-3 zone.
At the halfway point, the Cavaliers were shooting at a nice 52-percent clip from the field and their accuracy from the 3-point line (7-11) has been on point. As a result, some passing lanes have opened up for this patient Virginia squad and any easy buckets against Syracuse are likely to make UVa head coach Tony Bennett very happy. Case in point, this alley-oop pass from senior guard London Perrantes:
A deft use of the pump fake and a single dribble forces the defense to react and the rest is just good basketball instincts.
The Orange will have to get back to the drawing board at halftime to find a way to get a bit more offense going, but they'll have the hometown faithful behind them. Twenty more minutes to go in this ACC affair.