Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - Melvin Johnson scored 17 points to lead 20th-ranked VCU to a 79-66 win over George Washington on Saturday.
Doug Brooks tallied 14 points off the bench and Mo Alie-Cox added 10 with eight rebounds for the Rams (19-6, 9-3 A-10), who snapped a two-game losing streak.
Patricio Garino netted 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting for the Colonials (17-8, 7-5).
"I thought we played OK in the first half, but we have to get better," GW coach Mike Lonergan said.
George Washington, which dropped both meetings to VCU this season, has lost four of five overall.
Johnson's fourth 3-pointer of the first half gave the Rams a 29-22 lead with under eight minutes to play. GW scored the next seven points to tie the game and the two teams played it close the rest of the half. Yuta Watanabe skipped a pass over to Joe McDonald for a successful jumper that knotted the score at 38-38 at the break.
Kethan Savage's jumper at 13:41 cut the Colonials deficit to one, then they only manufactured one point over the next six minutes as VCU started to pull away. Jordan Burgess followed Savage's basket with a 3 that started a 10-1 run for a 58-48 lead.
George Washington scored five straight out of a timeout to close the gap, but Johnson buried a 3-pointer to halt the mini surge from the hosts.
Brooks hit a trey moments later to push the lead to 11 prior to JeQuan Lewis' layup in traffic gave the Rams a 69-56 advantage with under six minutes left.
Treveon Graham, who missed VCU's double-overtime loss to La Salle due to a sprained ankle, returned to the lineup and contributed 10 points ... George Washngton had its 12-game home winning streak halted ... VCU has not lost three straight since the 2004-05 season.