Clemson Men’s Basketball faced their toughest test of the season at the Virginia Cavaliers and the results were not shocking.
The Cavaliers defeated the Tigers 64-57 in a game that was not as close as the final score would suggest. Virginia controlled the game from the start, leading by double digits multiple times in the game.
PJ Hall led the Tigers with 19 points, followed by Hunter Tyson with 17 points. No other Tiger scored more than seven points. The Clemson bench totaled seven points for the evening.
Virginia had three players who scored 12 points. They outrebounded Clemson 38-32 on the evening, including 12-7 on offensive rebounds.
Clemson had a better field goal percentage and three-point percentage than Virginia. The major difference maker was free throws. The Wahoos were 15 of 22 on free throw attempts while the Tigers were just 4 of 5.
Clemson is now tied with the Duke Blue Devils for fourth-place in the ACC standings at 13-6. The Tigers own the tiebreaker with the Devils due to Clemson’s 72-64 victory in Littlejohn Coliseum in January. If they were to finish tied for fourth place, Clemson would get the 4 seed in the ACC tournament and get the double-bye into the quarterfinals.
Clemson Men’s Basketball has little margin for error if they want to qualify for the NCAA Tournament
The Tigers have one game remaining on the schedule. They will host the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on 3/4 at 8:00 PM. The game will be televised on ACC Network. Duke’s final game will be against their arch-rivals, the North Carolina Tar Heels, in Chapel hill on the same evening.
The loss to Virginia mathematically eliminates the Tigers from any chance of sharing the ACC regular season title. Since Pittsburgh and Miami play in their final game, one of them is guaranteed to finish at least a game ahead of Clemson.
With the Tigers squarely on the bubble for the NCAA Tournament, Clemson must win against the Irish and win at least one game, and most likely two games, in the ACC Tournament to qualify for the Big Dance.