Virginia uses late run to down VCU

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Richmond, VA ( - Justin Anderson's status heading into Saturday's game was questionable.

He appeared fine on the court, however, and his performance spearheaded seventh-ranked Virginia's 74-57 win over VCU.

Anderson, who sprained his left ankle in Wednesday's win over No. 21 Maryland, missed the two days of practice leading up to the game, then scored 21 points with eight rebounds to lead the Cavs.

Anthony Gill supplied 18 points and Malcolm Brogdon added 15 for Virginia (9-0), which has won 11 of its 13 all-time meetings with the Rams.

Treveon Graham did all he could late for VCU (5-3), but his team-high 17 points was not enough to slow down Anderson and company. Melvin Johnson was the only other Ram in double figures with 15 points.

"Our fans were great,"said VCU head coach Shaka Smart. "It was a great atmosphere. This is the type of college basketball game that guys want to play in."

Graham gave VCU's sputtering offense a jolt with three straight 3-pointers to help trim its deficit to 59-55 with 6:58 remaining. London Perrantes quelled Graham's little surge with a tough driving layup before Evan Nolte knocked down his first basket of the day, a deep three, as part of 15 straight for the visitors.

Anderson also hit a 3-pointer during the run and Brogdon capped it with a trey from the top of the key as the Cavs won it going away. Jordan Burgess' two free throws ended a drought of 5:51 for the Rams to account for the final margin.

Virginia did a nice job in the first half in breaking VCU's press. Because of that, coupled with stingy defense of its own, it built a 10-point lead at the break.

Johnson cut the Rams' deficit to 25-23 with over seven minutes remaining in the half, but the Cavs' defense proved to be too much for the hosts to close the frame.

Anderson followed Johnson's basket with a layup that jump-started a 13-5 run over the final 6:44. Virginia shot 64 percent from the floor in the opening 20 minutes and limited VCU to 35 percent shooting, taking a 38-28 lead at the break.

Game Notes

VCU took a 59-56 win over the Cavs last season in Charlottesville ... Gill and Mike Tobey each pulled down eight rebounds for Virginia ... Perrantes dished out nine assists in the win ... Virginia shot 28-of-41 for the game, including 6-of-11 from beyond the arc ... The Rams were held to 23-of-60 shooting and made just seven of their 24 attempts from deep ... VCU forced 16 turnovers.