Virginia uses big second half to clip Winthrop

Charlottesville, VA (WWBT)- Tony Bennett's Virginia Cavaliers jumped out to a 1-0 start with a victory over South Carolina State on Sunday, and despite a scare on Tuesday, were able to make it two in a row to open up the 2011-2012 season.

Virginia closed out the game on a 28-4 run to pull away and top Winthrop, 69-48.  The two teams battled close throughout the first half and went into the break with the Cavaliers clinging to a 25-22 lead.  The game continue to be close throughout the second half, with Winthrop taking the lead, and an Andre Smith three pointer with 10:30 remaining put the Eagles in front, 44-41.  That's when Bennett's team turned it on, going on the run and cruising past Winthrop in the final ten minutes.

Mike Scott scored a game high 18 points and pulled down eight rebounds, also a game high.  Jontel Evans notched a career-high with 17 points on the night, while Assane Sene added ten.  KT Harrell and Malcolm Brogdon added eight points each.

Virginia was also helped along by exceptional free throw shooting.  The Cavaliers hit all 19 of their free throw attempts, setting a program record for a number of free throws in a perfect performance.

The Wahoos head to the U.S. Virgin Islands for their next four games, beginning Friday against TCU.  That game tips off at 6:00 pm.

Copyright 2011 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.