Dunn shines as Cavaliers roll past Louisville, 69-52, to complete season sweep

By Scott Ratcliffe

Photo: UVA Athletics

Virginia continued its dominance of Louisville on Saturday afternoon with a convincing, wire-to-wire, 69-52 victory at the KFC Yum! Center, marking the team’s second-straight win on the road.

Second-year forward Ryan Dunn had a monster day with numerous highlight-reel jams, recording his second double-double in as many games in the process with a career-high 19 points (8 for 10 from the field) and a game-high 11 rebounds.

For the Cavaliers (15-5, 6-3 ACC), it was their fourth-straight win overall and ninth-consecutive win over Louisville, as UVA has claimed 19 of the 21 meetings under Tony Bennett.

Senior point guard Reece Beekman just missed on a double-double of his own, finishing with 9 points, 9 assists and 5 steals in another stellar all-around performance.

Both Isaac McKneely and Jake Groves chipped in 9 points, with each knocking down three 3-pointers, while Andrew Rohde sank a pair from deep and finished with 7 points to go with 4 assists and 3 steals.

“It all came together — on both ends,” Bennett said after the game. “We were passing well, making some 3s, getting to the rim… when you’re scoring and the defense is right, that’s what you hope for and look for.”

It was all Wahoos from the opening tip, as Rohde’s first triple of the day capped an 11-0 start to the contest, with UVA connecting on its first 5 field goals.

The last-place Cardinals (6-13, 1-7) finally got on the scoreboard at the 14:15 mark of the first half after missing their first five shots (14 of their first 16).

Later in the half, Virginia used a 22-2 scoring run — Dunn scored a dozen points during that stretch — to blow the game open, as Louisville endured a field-goal drought of 9 minutes and 25 seconds before a Kaleb Glenn layup cut the Cavalier lead to 36-11 with just over two minutes left in the period.

Rohde’s second trifecta gave the Hoos their largest lead of the contest, 30, before UL leading scorer Mike James registered his first bucket of the day (he missed his first 4 attempts) to send the teams to the break, with UVA in complete control, 41-13.

The song remained the same in the second half until the Cardinals ramped up the pressure and scored 11 unanswered points and got back to within 20, 56-37, with just over 8 minutes to play. The Hoos answered right back with an 11-4 spurt, punctuated by a one-handed, alley-oop flush from Beekman to Dunn to make it a 67-41 ballgame with 3:09 remaining.

Virginia shot an even 50 percent (27 for 54), including 47 percent from 3-point land (8 for 17), and knocked down 7 of 10 free throws, all while coming up short on the glass (31-28 rebounds). The UVA defense registered 14 steals and 5 blocks, converting 18 Louisville turnovers into 24 points on the other end, and outscored the Cardinals in the paint, 30-18.

Tre White was the only UL player in double figures with 10 points. James, who was averaging a team-high 14 points per game coming in, finished with just 8 on 1-of-8 shooting (6 for 6 from the charity stripe). He had put up double figures in 12 of his last 13 outings.

Brandon Huntley-Hatfield had 8 points and 10 rebounds. The Cardinals shot 36 percent on the day (15 for 42), 27 percent from long range (3 of 11) and 79 percent from the foul line (19 for 24).

Team Notes

Courtesy UVA Media Relations

  • Virginia (15-5, 6-3 ACC) has a four-game win streak and two-game road win streak
  • UVA is 2-4 in true road games
  • Virginia is 10-2 all-time at the KFC Yum! Center, including a pair of wins at the 2019 NCAA South Regional
  • UVA led 41-13 at the half and improved to 14-0 when leading after the first 20 minutes
  • The 13 first-half points allowed marked a season low for UVA
  • UVA started the game on an 11-0 run on 5 of 5 shooting, while limiting Louisville to 0 of 5 shooting
  • UVA led 25-7 at 6:45 of the first half, holding Louisville to 2 of 13 shooting
  • An 18-1 run staked UVA to a 32-8 lead at 4:43 of the first half
  • UVA (14 steals) had 10 or more steals for the fifth time
  • UVA forced one shot-clock violation (14 in 2023-24)

Series Notes

  • Virginia is 24-5 all-time vs. Louisville in a series that dates to 1923-24
  • UVA has a nine-game win streak vs. Louisville
  • UVA completed its fourth straight season sweep of Louisville
  • UVA has a four-game win streak at KFC Yum! Center and has won 18 of the last 19 meetings overall
  • The Cavaliers are 11-4 vs. the Cardinals in Louisville, including an 8-2 mark at KFC Yum! Center
  • UVA is 19-2 vs. Louisville since the Cardinals joined the ACC
  • Tony Bennett is 19-2 vs. Louisville as head coach at Virginia

Player Notes

  • Double Figure Scorers: Ryan Dunn (19)
  • Dunn scored a career-high 19 points
  • Dunn added 11 rebounds for his fifth double-double (2nd consecutive)
  • Dunn reached double figures for the 12th time
  • Reece Beekman (9 points) added a season-high five steals and game-high nine assists
  • Andrew Rohde (7 points) matched a season high with three steals
  • Jake Groves (9 points) matched a season high with three 3-pointers


Virginia returns to John Paul Jones Arena on Wednesday looking to extend the nation’s longest home winning streak against Notre Dame (7 p.m., ESPN2). The Fighting Irish claimed the first matchup in South Bend, 76-54, in late December.