UVa head coach Dave Leitao said Thursday that he felt the preparation for a three-game exhibition trip to Canada at the end of August helped his team.
“It does provide you with a little bit of a head start in a couple of ways,” Leitao said. “You have some things in already that you don’t have to do on the first day and it allows our preseason to be more about advancement and teaching our guys.
“The other thing, as I’ve mentioned before, is that we’ve got so many questions to get answered with this particular team and the trip started that process of addressing certain areas, certain styles of play and even evaluating certain people to see if they’re ready to take on a new role. Those things helped, but this time of year is the most critical when you have to prove yourself no matter what you did positively or negatively in August.”
Leitao feels this team is together and he likes that fact.
“One of the things this group has is they’re together,” Leitao said. “They hang out with one another and they get along with one another. We discovered that and nurtured that during the two-week period in August. That’s very healthy and a really good starting point for a group.
“From a specific basketball standpoint, we were experimenting with some different things and how to play and adjustments we can make particularly on the offensive end. I don’t think we got all the answers for me to say that this is who and what we’re going to be and what we’re going to do, but it gives me a better starting point.”
Virginia’s returning starters include senior guard/forward Mamadi Diane (11.8 ppg., 4.4 rpg.), sophomore guard Jeff Jones (4.8 ppg.) and sophomore forward Mike Scott (5.7 ppg., 5.3 rpg.).
The Cavaliers have an exhibition game scheduled with Shepherd University (W.Va.) on Nov. 9 (2:00 p.m.) at John Paul Jones Arena and Virginia hosts VMI in the opening game of the regular season on Nov. 16 (4:00 p.m.).
Lynch Makes Timely Return to MoundBaseball5/28/16In his first appearance since April 13, freshman Daniel Lynch retired all four batters he faced Friday in Virginia's ACC tournament loss to Wake Forest.Transfers Eager to Help Lift ProgramFootball5/26/16UVA's football team added three transfers this spring: quarterback Kurt Benkert, offensive guard Jared Cohen and defensive end Jack Powers.Cavaliers' Reign Atop NCAA ContinuesMen's Tennis5/25/16With a 4-1 win over Oklahoma on Tuesday night, top-seeded Virginia captured its second straight NCAA men's title and third in four seasons.
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A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
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