PITTSBURGH -- Just two years removed from a Final Four appearance, Atlantic 10 Conference newcomer Virginia Commonwealth quickly is making opponents a believer. No. 22 VCU remained unbeaten in four A-10 games, using an explosive first-half run to demolish Duquesne, 90-63, on Saturday night. Rob Brandenberg scored 22 points on 7-of-11 shooting and Traveon Graham added 20 on 7-of-14 shooting for VCU (7-11, 0-4), which extended its road winning streak to 13. The Rams (16-3, 4-0) entered the game tied with Butler for the second-longest active streak in Division I behind Kansas' 15. The victory was the 100th under coach Shaka Smart, who became the 30th-fastest to reach the mark in college basketball history and just the 12th in his first four seasons. VCU used a 26-2 run to quickly break open the game midway through the half after leading just 11-10. Duquesne scored just one field goal during a span of 11 minutes, 8 seconds and fell behind at halftime, 44-18. Smart emptied his bench for a time in the second half, when Duquesne cut into the lead. But the deficit was insurmountable. VCU led by no less than 25 after taking control in the first half. Juvonite Reddic also scored in double figures for VCU with 16 points. A pair of freshmen led Duquesne (7-11, 0-4) in scoring. Derrick Colter had 15 points and Quevyn Winters scored 12. It was the first meeting between the schools. Graham scored 17 first-half points to lead the Rams, who quickly broke open the game with a 26-2 run midway through the half. Brandenberg added 11 as VCU (15-3, 3-0) shot 48.6 percent (17-for-35). VCU extended its road winning streak to 13. The current 12-game run is tied with Butler for the second-longest active streak in Division I and is just one behind Kansas' 15 in a row. NOTES: Atlantic 10 newcomer VCU faced Duquesne for the first time. The Rams have not faced three other A-10 schools: Fordham, Massachusetts and Temple. ... VCU was leading Division I in steals per game with an average of 13.1. The Rams registered four in the first half against Duquesne. ... Duquesne is 3-32 all-time against nationally ranked A-10 teams, last winning at home against No. 9 Xavier in 2008.
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