Virginia 90, James Madison 80
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP)—Devin Smith, Todd Billet and Elton Brown combined for 58 points and Virginia returned from a long layoff with an easy one Tuesday night, beating James Madison 90-80.
The Cavaliers (6-0), playing for the first time in 11 days after going through exams, were sloppy early and missed several easy shots, but took command before the first half ended and never were threatened.
James Madison (2-4), playing for the first time in 10 days, got a career-high 33 points from Ray Barbosa, 23 from Dwayne Broyles and little from anyone else. Barbosa had 23 in the second half, Broyles 20.
Billet had 20 points, Smith and Brown 19 each added for the Cavaliers, while Gary Forbes had 13. Billet hit four 3-pointers, Smith and Forbes two.
It was the first meeting of the teams in 20 years, an unusual circumstance considering the schools are only about 60 miles apart, and it probably seemed like a bad idea to the Dukes after about 12 minutes.
Brown scored nine of his 10 first-half points in a 21-6 run to close the half. The burst started shortly after James Madison pulled even at 20 and 22, and ended with the Cavaliers ahead 43-28 at halftime.
The Dukes, who were 6-of-10 in the first seven minutes, went only 5-of-22 the rest of the half and committed 12 turnovers.
In the second half, Barbosa’s two 3-pointers and layup and a basket by Eddie Greene-Long were the Dukes’ only points in the first eight minutes as Virginia hit five 3-pointers and scored 24 of the first 34 points.
Billet and Gary Forbes each hit two 3-pointers in the burst, which gave Virginia a 67-38 lead, its largest of the night.
James Madison closed within 11 several times in the waning moments, and within 10 in the final minute.