BROOKLYN, N.Y. — It was evident from the start Thursday night at Barclays Center that Virginia’s 10-game winning streak over Notre Dame was in jeopardy.
Sixth-seeded UVa scored the first field goal of the game but never led again as third-seeded Notre Dame defeated the Cavaliers 71-58 In the ACC Tournament quarterfinals.
The Irish (24-8) avenged a 71-54 loss to Virginia in South Bend, Indiana, in January. Thursday’s loss snapped a four-game late-season winning streak for UVa (22-10).
Notre Dame, which meets second-seeded Florida State in the semifinals, has won seven of its last eight games,
“We were outplayed tonight,” UVa coach Tony Bennett said. “Notre Dame guarded us hard. They were ready. You could see it. They were looking forward to playing us.”
After Virginia scored off the game’s opening tip, Notre Dame scored the next 10 points, causing Bennett to call an uncharacteristic first timeout with 16:02 remaining in the first half.
Starters Jack Salt and Devon Hall immediately came out and were replaced by Isaiah Wilkins and Mamadi Diakite, with Wilkins, who had been battling strep thread, scoring on his first trip down the floor.
Wilkins played only 14 minutes and finished with two points and three rebounds.
“He’s struggling with a bad virus or whatever it is,” Bennett said. “Maybe it’s a blessing in disguise if he can get some more real rest and recover.”
Darius Thompson and Jared Reuter entered the game shortly thereafter as the eighth and ninth UVa players to see action in the first 6:31. Marial Shayok made it 10 when he entered with 10:18 left in the half.
Notre Dame led 19-9 before Thompson hit three 3-pointers to cut the deficit to 23-18. Thompson had knocked down two 3 pointers off the bench early in UVa’s 75-63 victory over Pittsburgh on Wednesday night.
Freshman Kyle Guy, UVa’s leading scorer in three of its previous four games, missed all five of his field-goal attempts in the first half as he was guarded closely by taller Notre Dame senior Steve Vasturia.
“Well, obviously, he played well yesterday and I’m sure [the Irish] were contesting shots,” Bennett said. “As a a first-year guy, he’s got to learn from that. That wasn’t one of his stronger games.”
Guy, from Indianapolis, finished 0 for 8 against the program from his home state. London Perrantes, UVa’s leading scorer for the season, was 1 for 9 from the field.
“Obviously, Notre Dame played some good defense tonight,” Perrantes said, “but yeah, I missed some chip pies, some layups. I had a couple open threes that I missed. I don’t know. I can’t really tell you what it’s from.”
A bucket by back-up UVa forward Reuter cut Notre Dame’s lead to 30-26 with 1:08 left in the first half but Vasturia, hitting an ACC-leading 91.1 percent from the line for the season, countered with both ends of a one-and-one.
Matters only got worse for the Cavaliers after intermission as Notre Dame went on an 11-0 run that made it 43-26 following a T.J. Gibbs field goal with 14:55 remaining in the game.
UVa had a chance to cut the deficit to 11 before Thompson missed the first of two free throws with 11:29 left. Moments later, Salt missed both free throws after being fouled on a field-throw attempt.
First-team All-ACC pick Bonzie Colson had a double-double with a game-high 20 points and 10 rebounds. Hall scored 12 points for Virginia, with Thompson, Ty Jerome and Shayok adding10 apiece.
Virginia, an underdog only five times all season, entered the game as a 4 ½-point favorite over the Irish, who had a double-bye into the quarterfinals.
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