Farrakhan’s 31 shoot Virginia past Howard, 84-63

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP)—Mustapha Farrakhan made his first 11 shots from the field, including eight 3-pointers, and scored a career-high 31 points Tuesday night, leading Virginia to a 84-63 victory against Howard.

Joe Harris hit five 3-pointers and added 16 points for the Cavaliers (10-5), who snapped out of a long-distance funk in which they went 11 for 63 over their past three games. Virginia was 16 for 25 from beyond the arc, falling two 3s shy of the single-game school record.

Mike Phillips scored 21 points and Dadrian Collins 15 for Howard (2-11), which lost despite shooting 53 percent (24 of 45) with eight 3s. The Bison couldn’t keep pace with Farrakhan.

The senior had 18 points by halftime. He hit five 3s during a streak of nine consecutive 3-pointers for the Cavaliers, who took command with a 31-12 burst. It gave them a 41-28 lead, and the Bison only cut it to single digits once after that.

After the Bison pulled to 49-40 on a three-point play by Phillips with 17:01 left, they turned it over on their next three possessions. KT Harrell hit a jumper after the first, Farrakhan a 3-pointer after the second and Akil Mitchell finished it with a steal and dunk.

Farrakhan went to the bench to rousing applause with 8:53 left, then came back in needing one 3-pointer to tie Curtis Staples’ school record of nine in a game. He got a shot shortly after returning, but the ball bounced off the rim, the only time he hit the rim all night.

His previous high was 23 points this season against Minnesota.

The first half looked like a shooting exhibition, especially for Virginia.

The Cavaliers made 10 consecutive field-goal attempts in the half, nine from 3-point territory, and shot 76 percent in the half (16 of 21), but the Bison trailed only 45-32 at the break.

Collins, who hit his first four 3-point shots, led the Bison with 12 points, and Phillips was 5 for 6 and scored 10 in the opening half. Howard, a 35-percent shooting team, shot 56.6 percent in the half (13 of 23).

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
Mike Phillips Mike Phillips
9-15,  21 Pts
4 Rebs, 1 Assists
Mustapha Farrakhan Mustapha Farrakhan
11-12,  31 Pts
1 Rebs, 0 Assists

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Tuesday, Jan 4