Virginia Basketball Double Bonus: Notre Dame

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Virginia has 16 wins.
Mamadi Diakite scores on a reverse layup against Notre Dame. ~ Kris Wright

If you’re a Virginia basketball fan, you’ve seen this before this season. The Hoos grind and defend their way through 35 minutes to end up in a closely contested game with five minutes to go. Then they battle it out to see which team wins. The Notre Dame game, like many ACC and other contests before it this year, followed that exact pattern before UVA won 50-49 in overtime.

The Cavaliers had one player in double figures for scoring as Mamadi Diakite posted his second 20-point game of the season with 20 points, 5 rebounds, 1 blocked shot, and 1 steal. Diakite has 10 games with at least 15 points, which includes three of the last five. Kihei Clark added 9 points and 3 assists. Jay Huff tallied 8 points and 9 rebounds. Braxton Key had 13 rebounds. That was just enough to add up to win No. 16 on the season.

The Double Bonus is back for a closer look at the latest victory.

Split The Bump

Notre Dame didn’t rely heavily on zone defense during the game, logging 17 possessions of zone vs. 44 possession of man against the Cavaliers per the Synergy Sports data. That included 13 second-half zone possessions where the Hoos scored 9 times. (That data ties into this recent Double Bonus article on UVA’s zone offense; since that article, in large part thanks to Tomas Woldetensae’s explosion at Louisville, the Hoos now score .802 points per possession vs. man defense and 0.778 vs. zone.)

With that as the backdrop, I spotted at least three possessions