After players’ deaths, UVA cancels home finale

After players' deaths, UVA cancels home finale

Virginia has canceled its game against Coastal Carolina on Saturday after the shooting deaths of players Lavel Davis Jr., D’Sean Perry and Devin Chandler, the school announced Wednesday.

No decision has been made on the season finale against Virginia Tech on Nov. 26 in Blacksburg.

Davis, Perry, Chandler, running back Mike Hollins and another student were shot Sunday night after returning to campus from a class field trip. Hollins survived but remains hospitalized after being shot in the back. The other student who survived is considered to be in good condition.

The suspected shooter is former Virginia football player Christopher Darnell Jones Jr., who was arrested by police Monday. Jones, 22, was denied bail during a court hearing Wednesday.

Jones faces three counts of second-degree murder, two counts of malicious wounding and additional gun-related charges. Jones did not enter a plea Wednesday. Appearing by video link from jail, Jones told Albemarle General District Court Judge Kenneth Andrew Sneathern he plans to hire an attorney, but the judge appointed a public defender to represent him for the time being.

The judge also set a status hearing in the case for Dec. 8.

In a news conference Tuesday, Virginia athletic director Carla Williams had said her department would consult with coach Tony Elliott and the team about playing Saturday’s game.

“Obviously, they’re going through a lot, and we want to make sure they’re involved as well. We’ll use our best judgment,” Williams said.

Coastal Carolina expressed support for the decision to cancel the game.

“As much as we love gameday and the spirit it brings, there is a time when the sanctity of life and sustaining of a community take precedence. This is one of those times,” Matt Hogue, Coastal Carolina’s vice president for intercollegiate athletics, said in a statement. “We fully support the decision and will continue offering our assistance and contribute however we can toward the healing of our friends and colleagues at UVA.”

Meanwhile, classes at Virginia resumed Wednesday. A campuswide event honoring the victims was in the works, and Perry’s family released a statement sharing their grief over his death.

“Football and art was his passion, but the love that he had for his family, friends and his community was proven time and time again through his candid dedication,” the statement read. “We truly appreciate the outpouring of love and support from so many people. We continue to keep the families of the other victims of this senseless tragedy in our prayer.”

Gordon McKernan, a spokesperson for the Hollins family, also told ESPN’s Mark Schlabach that Hollins had emergency surgery Sunday night to remove a bullet from his stomach. Doctors performed a second surgery to check for internal injuries and were encouraged by what they found, McKernan said.

McKernan said doctors removed Hollins from a ventilator after the second surgery.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.