CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP)Kihei Clark scored five points during a 12-0 second-half run and No. 16 Virginia overcame a sloppy effort to beat Navy 65-56 Sunday.
Braxton Key led Virginia (10-2) with 15 points, Mamadi Diakite had 13 and Clark added 10 and 13 assists. Clark’s foul-line jumper with 9:09 remaining gave the Cavaliers the lead they had just relinquished. Key added two baskets and Clark barely beat the shot clock with a 3-point heave that rattled in, giving Virginia a 50-41 lead.
Cam Davis led Navy (6-5) with 19 points and Evan Wieck had 13. The loss was the 19th in a row for the Midshipmen when facing a ranked opponent.
The Cavaliers had only one turnover in the first half but added seven in the second as Navy slowly cut into the lead. A 3-pointer by John Carter Jr. gave the Midshipmen a 41-40 lead with 10:39 to go, but Clark’s jumper got the Cavaliers the lead back and they scored the next 10 points.
Navy: Wieck is the only senior on the Midshipmen’s roster. Navy shares the lead among all teams nationally with 11 freshmen, and they also have five sophomores, making this close game an encouraging sign.
Virginia: The Cavaliers led 37-29 at halftime but managed just one basket – a 3-pointer by Diakite – before Clark’s foul-line jumper with 9:09 remaining. Including a buzzer-beater to end the first half, Navy outscored Virginia 15-3 in that 11-minute stretch to take the crowd-silencing 41-40 lead.
The Midshipmen return home to face Lehigh on Thursday night.
Virginia remains at home and faces ACC rival Virginia Tech on Saturday.
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