Brogdon scores 23 as No. 12 Virginia beats Lehigh 80-54
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) Virginia coach Tony Bennett called Wednesday's visit by Lehigh ''a game of cementing some habits,'' and after the Cavaliers got off to a slow start, Malcolm Brogdon and their defense took over.
Brogdon scored 23 points, and No. 12 Virginia beat Lehigh 80-54 on for its fourth consecutive victory.
''We just wore then down and we got what we wanted,'' Bennett said.
Darius Thompson added 12 points for Virginia, and Marial Shayok had 11. Anthony Gill scored 10 points.
The Cavaliers (5-1) shot 52.3 percent (34 for 65) from the field. They also outscored the Mountain Hawks 42-14 in the paint.
Tim Kempton and Kyle Leufroy each scored 14 for Lehigh (0-5), which committed 17 turnovers leading to 25 points for Virginia.
The Cavaliers used a 16-4 run to erase a two-point Lehigh lead in the first half. The Mountain Hawks closed to 35-30 before Virginia put together a 24-8 surge in the second half.
Lehigh coach Brett Reed felt the Mountain Hawks struggled with the Cavaliers' defensive pressure during the second-half burst.
''We normally have a very secure point guard on Kahron Ross, but during that stretch he just got a little out of balance,'' Reed said.
Ross finished with 11 points, four assists and three turnovers. Leufroy had four turnovers. The Mountain Hawks also were outrebounded 37-29 and got 18 points from their reserves, compared to 30 for Virginia.
Brogdon said seeing Virginia's work on defense pay off makes it more fun to play.
''When we get three stops in a row, we call that a gap, and once we got one and then two, we know we're on a roll,'' he said. ''We know we can sort of harness that energy and let it carry over for the rest of the game.''
Brogdon scored 12 of Virginia's first 16 points. He went 10 of 15 from the field, including 3 of 5 on 3-pointers.
''Malcolm had a nice pace offensively,'' Bennett said. ''He was just in a good rhythm.''
He also developed a fan in Reed.
''He's really a pretty special player because he made the game look easy,'' Reed said.
Thompson, a transfer from Tennessee, barely beat the shot clock with a 3-pointer that sparked an 11-0 streak that grew into the large second-half burst. It gave Virginia a 59-38 lead with 10 minutes remaining.
Bennett emptied his bench with 1:37 to play, and walk-on Caid Kirven promptly hit a jumper.
Virginia has scored 80 or more points in five of six games. Last season, it scored 80 or more twice in 34 games.
Lehigh: The Mountain Hawks fell to 0-2 this season against teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference. They lost 57-47 to Syracuse in their opener. ... Lehigh shot 40 percent (20 for 50) from the field. ... Leufroy was 4 for 5 from 3-point range.
Virginia: The Cavaliers entered with a 34-34 record against teams in the Patriot League. The bulk of that came thanks to a 14-31 record against Navy.
Lehigh: Visit No. 16 Purdue on Saturday.
Virginia: Visit Ohio State next Tuesday.