Malcolm Brogdon scored 23 points and No. 6 Virginia claimed its first Atlantic Coast Conference tournament title since 1976 by beating No. 7 Duke 72-63 on Sunday. Tournament MVP Joe Harris added 15 points and hit the backbreaking 3-pointer with just under 2 minutes remaining for the top-seeded Cavaliers (28-6). They shot 45 percent, pestered the Blue Devils into 38 percent shooting and used a late 12-3 run to pull away and claim the second ACC tournament title in school history. Jabari Parker scored 23 points on 9-of-24 shooting for the third-seeded Blue Devils (26-8), who were making their 31st appearance in the championship game but were denied their ACC-record 20th title. Anthony Gill added 12 points and was 10 of 17 from the free-throw line for Virginia. Duke as a team was just 7 of 11 from the line. The Cavaliers came to Greensboro off of their first outright regular-season title since 1981, and were trying to do something not even Ralph Sampson could do. It had been a long time - 38 years - since Wally Walker led Virginia to its only previous ACC tournament title. Now that trophy will have some company. With its "pack line" defense clicking and holding Duke 13 points below its scoring average, Virginia was in control for most of the day, yet could never get any separation until the final 2 1/2 minutes. Akil Mitchell hit a shot to make it 61-57, then stripped Parker at the other end to set up Harris' wide-open 3 in transition that extended the lead to seven and had Duke's Rodney Hood fuming. Harris gave Duke a final chance when he rushed up a shot and Quinn Cook countered with a 3 with 1 1/2 minutes left to pull the Blue Devils back within four. Brogdon then drove through the Duke defense for a momentum-shifting layup that made it 66-60 with just over a minute to play and caused Duke assistant Jeff Capel to tellingly slump back on the bench in exasperation.
No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers Clinch ACC Title Over No. 7 Duke, 72-63
VirginiaSports.com | Mar 17