PICTURES: REDEMPTION! Virginia outlasts Texas Tech in overtime to win NCAA Championship

Virginia's Ty Jerome (11) makes a shot against Texas Tech's Kyler Edwards (0) during the second half in the championship of the Final Four NCAA college basketball tournament, Monday, April 8, 2019, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Now that, Virginia, is the way to close out a season.

Led by De'Andre Hunter and his NBA-ready game, the Cavaliers turned themselves into national champions Monday night, holding off tenacious, ferocious Texas Tech for an 85-77 overtime win — a scintillating victory that came 388 days after a crushing setback that might have sunk a lesser team for years.

But Virginia was better than that.

A season after becoming the first No. 1 seed to lose to a 16 — the one thing that had never happened in a tournament where anything can — the Cavaliers watched a 10-point lead turn into a 3-point deficit before Hunter came to the rescue. The sophomore made the game-tying 3 with 12.1 seconds left in regulation, then made another 3 with 2:07 left in the extra period to give the Cavs the lead for good.

After going scoreless for the first 18 1/2 minutes, Hunter finished with a career-high 27 points, and if he leaves as a lottery pick — well, what a way to go out.

He helped the Cavs bring home the first NCAA title for a program with a colorful, star-crossed and, now, very winning history.


Virginia's Braxton Key (2) dunks during the overtime in the championship of the Final Four NCAA college basketball tournament against Texas Tech, Monday, April 8, 2019, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)