20-0 Runs Surges UVa Past Liberty
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP/WSET/LU athletics) -- Anthony Gill scored 13 points and Virginia scored 20 consecutive points in the second half and beat Liberty 75-53 on Saturday.
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Malcolm Brogdon added 12 points for the Cavaliers (4-1), who started the game ranked second nationally in scoring defense at 49.8 points, then limited Liberty to eight points in the first 14 minutes after halftime.
Davon Marshall led the Flames with 15 points and Antwan Burrus had 12. The loss was the fourth in a row for Liberty (1-4), an NCCA tournament team last season which gained its only victory of this season against Division III Randolph.
John Caleb Sanders' 3-pointer pulled the Flames within 40-31 with 14:28 to play, but Joe Harris' tip-in started the Cavaliers' big run. Akil Mitchell followed with a dunk, Brogdon hit a 3-pointer and, before it was over, London Perrantes and Evan Nolte added 3s for the Cavaliers, pushing the lead to 60-31.
Sanders finally ended a nearly 8 1/2-minute scoreless drought with another 3 with 6 minutes to play, and in the closing minutes, Virginia coach Tony Bennett emptied his bench to the delight of fans, especially when Thomas Rogers, a former walk-on granted a scholarship this year, hit a 3-pointer in garbage time.
The first half was sluggish, and sloppy, especially for the Flames, who had 10 turnovers.
Gill scored four points and Justin Anderson five in a 9-0 run that gave Virginia a 21-10 lead midway through the first half, but Tomasz Gielo's 3-pointer with 5 minutes to play sparked a 12-4 burst by the Flames. They closed to within 30-26 before Darion Atkins' basket made it 32-26 at the half.
-UVa assistant coach Ritchie McKay used to be the head coach at LU. He recruited current LU players John Caleb Sanders and Joel Vander Pol.
-After Davon Marshall scored 11 first half points mainly with London Perrantes defending him, UVa switched defenders - using Malcolm Brogdon and Justin Anderson against Marshall. "They just did a good job finding me in the second half," Marshall said. He was limited to four points in the final 20 minutes.
-Eleven different players scored for UVa.
-With the victory, Virginia now leads the all-time series against the Flames, 7-2. The contest was the first meeting between Liberty and the Cavaliers since the Flames upset the ACC member, 86-82 on Nov. 25, 2008.
-Liberty continues play in the Corpus Christi Challenge on Tuesday, squaring off with Missouri State. Game time in Springfield, Mo., is slated for 8:05 p.m. (EST).