Double Bonus: Duke

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Akil Mitchell had a lot of dunks against Duke thanks mostly to screen-and-roll offense.

Welcome to the list, Duke. The Virginia men’s basketball team took down the Blue Devils 73-68 on Thursday night, a victory that extended the program record John Paul Jones Arena winning streak to 16 games and gave coach Tony Bennett the only missing win from the current ACC opponent list. This game featured a bunch of strategy notes and the “Double Bonus” takes a closer look at some of the keys to UVa’s triumph.

Screen And Roll

Joe Harris lit up Duke for 36 points and Akil Mitchell pitched in 19 too, but one of the overlooked keys to the game was the play of Jontel Evans off the dribble. Yes, Evans scored just 6 points on 3-of-7 shooting and, yes, he had more turnovers (4) than assists (3). Even so, Evans created a lot of Mitchell’s offense with his screen-and-roll decision-making or general driving ability.

First, let’s look at some the screen-and-roll production in the first half. Evans hit a pull-up jumper when Mason Plumlee switched on a late shot clock screen early in the game and that made it 7-0 UVa. He scored the team’s next basket too when it looked like Mitchell was going to set a high on-ball screen for him early in the shot clock. Evans saw the defender angled too much so he blew by the D for an uncontested lay-up and a 9-0 lead.

Jontel Evans frequently broke down the Duke defense with the dribble.

On the basket that made it 13-4, the Hoos called for a screen-and-roll play from the left side of the floor and Evans exploited the defense with a one-handed pass off the dribble to Mitchell for an easy one-handed