UNCASVILLE, Conn. (CBS SF/AP) — Playing their third game in three days, the University of San Francisco rallied in the second half to stun No. 4 Virginia, 61-60, in the Homelight Classic for the program’s biggest win in 39 years.
The last time the Dons have upset a top-five opponent was a 1981 win over then No.2 Wichita State.
“I’m incredibly proud of our players for the way they executed both mentally and physically,” USF head coach Todd Golden said after the game. “We showed tremendous toughness. Virginia is a program that we want to be like, they are incredibly well coached, they are tough, they play to win, they play for each other. To go on a neutral court and beat them is a springboard kind of win for our program.”
Jamaree Bouyea scored 19 points, Khalil Shabazz added 14 points and Taavi Jurkatamm had two big 3-pointers in the second half for the Dons (2-1). Besides scoring the most points, Bouyea went 8-for-15 from the field and 3-for-6 from beyond the arc. He also had six assists, two steals and no turnovers.
“Jamaree was the best player on the court today,” Golden said. “He played 36 minutes and masterfully controlled the game on both sides of the court – the way he defended Kihei Clark was a big reason why we got this done.”
Reece Beekman and Justin McCoy each scored 11 points for Virginia (1-1), a 15 1/2-point favorite. Marquette transfer Sam Hauser added 10 points, but missed a 3-pointer with 2 seconds left that would have won the game for the Cavaliers.
A jumper by Hauser put Virginia ahead 54-53 with 3:42 left, but that would be its last lead of the game. Josh Kunen missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 10 seconds left, giving the Cavaliers the final shot.
But Hauser’s attempt fell off the rim and Trey Murphy III couldn’t convert a tip just before the buzzer.
The Dons have improved over each of the three straight days they’ve played. They dropped their opener 76-68 to UMass-Lowell, a game in which they were heavy favorites, and beat Towson 79-68 on Thursday.
“Today was a truly just a great team effort, to be honest,” Golden said. “Everyone who played contributed and that’s what you need when you play a team like Virginia. Great moment for our program, especially after all the time effort and energy that our guys have given over the last eight months. This is a great experience for us and something that we need to build on as we get into the season. If we stay focused and stay mentally tough, this is going to be a really special season.”
They are scheduled to play their fourth game in five days in Bubbleville on Sunday, taking on Rhode Island.
Watch USF celebrate after their win:
"I Left My Heart In San Francisco" 🎶
— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) November 27, 2020