Austin Kenon and Michael Sparks scored 21 points apiece as Virginia Military Institute cruised to an 85-66 win over Gardner-Webb on Thursday night.

The Keydets (12-8, 5-5 Big South Conference) equaled their league win total from last season in winning their first conference home game.

Coming off a 100-82 loss to Liberty, VMI never trailed and led by as many as 15 points in the first half.

The Runnin' Bulldogs (7-15, 2-8) got within eight points, at 50-42 with 14:40 left, but could get no closer despite outscoring the Keydets 30-12 in the paint in the second half.

Kenon, who hit 5 of 10 3-pointers, set the VMI school record for most 3-pointers and now has 311.

Sparks was 5 of 8 from long range as the Keydets, the nation's scoring leaders (92.2 points per game) hit 14 of 33 3-pointers.

Josh Henley scored 13 points on 5-of-5 shooting to pace Gardner-Webb.