National Basketball Association
James Madison 52, Virginia 49
When: 6:30 PM ET, Tuesday, December 7, 2021
Where: Atlantic Union Bank Center, Harrisonburg, Virginia
# Bill Covington Jr., # Tommy Morrissey, # Tony Henderson
Takal Molson scored the game's last four points and James Madison celebrated its first victory ever against visiting Virginia on Tuesday night, beating the cold-shooting Cavaliers 52-49 in Harrisonburg, Va.
The Dukes (8-2) dropped the first 11 meetings with the Cavaliers (6-4) in a series that started in 1977, including a lopsided 31-point loss in the most recent contest in 2019.
Vado Morse led a balanced James Madison offense with nine points in the first sold-out game at the 8,500-seat Atlantic Union Bank Center, which opened last year with pandemic-restricted crowds. Many of those fans rushed the court as the horn sounded.
It was a sweet signature victory for second-year Dukes coach Mark Byington, who was the director of basketball operations at Virginia during the 2004-05 season.
Molson finished with eight points and three JMU players scored seven apiece.
Jayden Gardner had 12 points and 14 rebounds and Kihei Clark added 11 points for the Cavaliers, who shot 15.4 percent (4 of 26) from 3-point range.
The Dukes led 41-31 on Tyree Ihenacho's layup with 11:13 remaining.
The Cavaliers woke up with a 14-3 spurt to pull ahead 45-44 with 3:50 to play, their first lead since it was 11-9.
The lead went back and forth down the stretch before the Dukes went up 50-49 on Molson's jump shot with 1:10 left.
After Armaan Franklin missed a shot at the other end for Virginia, Molson knocked down a fadeaway jumper with 22 seconds left for a 52-49 edge.
Clark missed a 3-pointer and Virginia fouled Terell Strickland, who missed the front end of the one-and-one to give the Cavaliers life. However, Franklin's 3-point heave at the buzzer was off the mark.
James Madison led 24-14 at halftime.
The Cavaliers jumped out to a 10-2 lead before going ice cold, missing their first 13 attempts from 3-point range. They finished the half with more turnovers (nine) than made field goals (6 of 22).
James Madison took advantage of Virginia's shooting woes and surged to a 24-11 lead with a 22-1 run. Seven different Dukes scored during that run.
Clark's corner 3-pointer with three seconds left in the half finally ended a UVA scoring drought of 9:31 and a field goal drought of 12:41.
--Field Level Media
Top Game Performances
Jayden Gardner 12
Vado Morse 9
Reece Beekman 4
Takal Molson 2
Jayden Gardner 14
Justin Amadi 7
Reece Beekman 2
||Free Throws Made
Justin Amadi 2
Armaan Franklin 2
Justin Amadi 1
Kadin Shedrick 3
Team Stats Summary