George Washington shot 20 percent from the field in the second half, and UVA used a 17-3 run to break open a tight game en route to a 59-42 win on Friday at the John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville.
The Colonials (2-1) led by as many as seven points in the first half, and it was 26-22 GW at the half, but it could have and probably should have been much worse. The ninth-ranked Cavs (4-0) shot just 33 percent in the opening 20 minutes and allowed GW to shoot 45.8 percent from the field.
That all changed after the halftime break. Virginia opened the half on a 14-2 run in the opening 4:45 to take a 36-28 lead, and after George Washington closed to within two at 36-34 with 11:23 to go on a three-pointer by Yuta Watanabe, Virginia went on an extended 17-3 scoring run that pushed the lead to 16 at 53-37 with 3:18 to go on a layup by Darion Atkins.
GW was just 5-for-25 from the floor in the second half, while Virginia shot 50 percent in the second half (15-of-30) in outscoring the Colonials, an NCAA Tournament participant in 2014 picked to finish second in the rugged Atlantic 10 this season, 37-16 in the second 20 minutes.
Justin Anderson scored a game-high 18 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the field. Malcolm Brogdon added 15, and Atkins had eight points and 11 rebounds for UVA, which outrebounded George Washington 41-28, including a 25-11 advantage in the second half.
GW was led by Kethan Savage’s 13 points.