Tiger Rally Falls Short Despite 43 from Solomon


by - Correspondent -
    |

CLEMSON, SC -- It's tempting to say Virginia coach Pete Gillen ignored Will
Solomon and dared the rest of Clemson's team to beat Virginia on Saturday.
But he didn't. Gillen threw everything he had at Solomon, who still scored
43.


Solomon threw up shots from nearly every place on the court and gave Clemson
some life after a dismal start. Virginia (11-5 overall, 2-2 Atlantic Coast
Conference) survived, though, with a 98-91 win over the Tigers in front of
8,000 at Littlejohn Coliseum.


"It was a monumental win for our team," said Gillen, who was sweating
buckets after watching Solomon lead Clemson (6-10, 0-4) back from a 22-point
deficit.


"We couldn't stop Will Solomon," said Gillen. "We recruited him, so at least
that shows we know who to recruit sometimes. He's a great player, but he
shouldn't get 43 points. That's not good."


Solomon scored the most points by a Clemson player since Butch Zatezalo
scored 43 against N.C. State in 1970. He hit 14 of 21 shots, eight of 12
3-point attempts, to lead a second-half rally. Solomon scored 27 points in
the final 12:31 of the game.


"He had to receive the ball against the press and organize the defense and
guard one of the best guards in the nation," said Clemson coach Larry
Shyatt. "There is a line item, assists to turnovers, that doesn't look that
good and at one point he lost his cool, as did his coach, but he regrouped."


Clemson trailed by 18 at the half after falling apart in the final seven
minutes of the first half. And it appeared that Virginia was going to
continue to run away with the game after taking a 57-35 lead on a put-back
by Travis Watson with 17:56 left in the game.


However, Pasha Bains scored ten points during a 12-7 Clemson run that cut
the lead to 17. Solomon then started a 24-12 Clemson run with a 15-footer.
Virginia went cold against Clemson's zone while Solomon hit four 3-pointers
during Clemson's run. Adrius Jurkunas hit a 3-pointer from the top of the
key to cut Virginia's lead to 79-74 with 3:30 left in the game.


Chris Williams hit a 3-pointer to put Virginia up 79-71 with 3:56 left and
Roger Mason was fouled attempting a 3-pointer with 2:58 left. Mason hit all
three free throws to give Virginia an 84-74 lead.


"I thought the Mason free throws in the corner was a very, very big call
because we rebounded and it's a shot on our terms and I'm not permitted to
talk about fouling, period," said Shyatt.


Clemson started fouling and Virginia hit 14-19 free throws in the final two
minutes.


"I wouldn't have been stunned if we had missed them on the road with the
crowd and all," said Gillen.


Clemson did not get any closer than four points in the final two minutes,
but the Tigers did find some life.


"We looked better at the end of all the chapters today," said Shyatt.


BOX SCORE


VIRGINIA

                         FG   3PT    FT    Reb                     
 No Player          Min  M-A   M-A   M-A   O-D-T   A PF ST TO BK PTS
 35 Travis Watson    21  5-8   0-0   4-6   3-3-6   0  4  1  0  1  14
 24 Willie Dersch    21  3-6   1-3   0-0   0-1-1   3  1  1  1  1   7
 33 Chris Williams   27  7-13  3-5   1-2   4-2-6   2  5  4  3  2  18
 13 Donald Hand      34  4-13  2-7   8-10  0-1-1   5  4  3  0  0  18
 21 Roger Mason      16  0-5   0-2   6-7   0-1-1   3  4  2  1  0   6
 11 Majestic Mapp    22  3-8   2-7   4-4   0-1-1   3  0  2  0  0  12
 14 Keith Friel      23  3-10  3-10  0-0   0-1-1   3  1  0  0  0   9
  4 Stephane DonDon  18  2-3   1-2   3-3   1-6-7   2  2  1  2  0   8
 52 Colin Ducharme   11  3-4   0-1   0-0   0-2-2   0  3  1  1  1   6
 22 Josh Hare         7  0-2   0-1   0-0   0-1-1   1  0  0  0  0   0
    Totals          200 30-72 12-38 26-32 8-19-27 22 24 15  8  5  98

Percentages: FG .417, 3PT .316, FT .812. Team Rebounds: 3. Team Turnovers: 0.


CLEMSON
                          FG   3PT    FT     Reb                     
 No Player           Min  M-A   M-A   M-A    O-D-T   A PF ST TO BK PTS
 55 Adam Allenspach   29  5-11  0-0   6-8    3-4-7   2  2  1  4  0  16
  3 Andrius Jurkunas  33  1-7   1-2   0-0    2-6-8   3  4  0  6  1   3
 42 Chucky Gilmore    31  2-6   0-0   0-2   5-7-12   4  5  0  0  3   4
 15 Will Solomon      37 14-21  8-12  7-10   0-9-9   3  4  1  7  1  43
 33 Pasha Bains       36  5-11  2-6   4-5    1-2-3   1  2  1  4  0  16
 31 Tomas Nagys        8  1-1   0-0   5-5    0-3-3   1  2  0  1  0   7
  0 Walker Holt       19  0-0   0-0   2-2    0-2-2   2  5  0  2  0   2
 21 Ray Henderson      5  0-0   0-0   0-0    0-0-0   0  0  0  0  0   0
 32 Arturus Javtokas   1  0-0   0-0   0-0    0-0-0   0  0  0  0  0   0
  0 J.D. Powell        1  0-0   0-0   0-0    0-0-0   0  0  0  0  0   0
    Totals           200 28-57 11-20 24-32 11-33-44 16 24  3 24  5  91

Percentages: FG .491, 3PT .550, FT .750. Team Rebounds: 4. Team Turnovers: 0.

Virginia 50 48-98 Clemson 32 59-91



Officials-Karl Hess, Leslie Jones, Jamie Luckie.

A-8,000

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