CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) Akil Mitchell had 15 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists and Virginia overcame sloppy play to beat Morgan State 75-57 on Wednesday night, the Cavaliers' eighth consecutive victory.
Darion Atkins added a career-high 17 points and Joe Harris scored 14 for Virginia (9-2).
DeWayne Jackson scored 32, tying the record for an opponent at John Paul Jones Arena, for the Bears (3-5). The 32 points was also achieved by Clemson's K.C. Rivers and Penn State's Talor Battle.
Virginia led 43-34 when two baskets by Atkins sparked a 12-2 run early in the second half. With Jackson carrying the Bears, they closed within 59-50 with 6:54 to play before Virginia surged again.
A three-point play by Evan Nolte started another 12-2 run for Virginia, and they cruised from there.
Paul Jesperson hit his third 3-pointer of the night in the burst and scored a career-high 11 for the Cavaliers, who overcame nine second-half turnovers. They also outrebounded the Bears 39-21.
Virginia led 14-8 until the Bears went on a Jackson-led, 13-4 run. The senior scored 10 of the points, and hit two of his three first-half 3-pointers in the burst that gave Morgan State a 21-18 lead.
Virginia answered quickly, taking control back with a 15-0 spurt. Paul Jesperson hit back-to-back 3-pointers to start it, and freshman Justin Anderson capped with a 3 from deep on the right wing.
Jackson's 19-point first half was the highest scoring first half for an opponent in John Paul Jones Arena history. Four players have scored 17 players in a first half at the arena, which opened in 2006.
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On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, Chase Hughes and Chris Miller look ahead to the biggest questions the Wizards need to answer after the All-Star break. They also explain why Bradley Beal proved a lot in his first All-Star Game appearance.
They also unveiled a new segment involving guessing Wizards players based on their social media captions.
You can listen to the episode right here:
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When the Capitals acquired defenseman Michal Kempny on Monday, that put the team at the maximum of 23 players on the roster including eight defenseman.
Another move seemed likely and the Caps made it on Tuesday by placing veteran blueliner Taylor Chorney on waivers.
Teams now will have 24 hours to potentially claim Chorney. Should he clear at 12 p.m. on Wednesday, it is expected that he will be sent to the Hershey Bears of the AHL. Whether he is claimed or sent to Hershey, his entire $800,000 cap hit will no longer count against the Capitals' salary.
One important thing to note, however, is that placing Chorney on waivers was not required in order for Washington to remain under the salary cap.
Having eight defensemen would mean scratching two every game — assuming the team does not dress seven and after that failed experiment in last year's playoffs, why would they — which means it would be a struggle to make sure everyone gets consistent playing time in the final weeks of the season.
Perhaps placing Chorney on waivers is the team trying to get him more playing time to keep him sharp in case the team suffers injuries on the blue line and he is called upon in the playoffs.
Or perhaps it could mean something else.
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Chorney played on Feb. 15, but that was during the mentor's trip. Barry Trotz's policy for those trips is to get everyone in at least one of those two games. Before that, Chorney had not played since Jan. 2. It certainly seems like the team was comfortable with him being the designated No. 7 and was not all that concerned about getting him regular playing time before now.
When asked if the Kempny trade would mean any roster moves, Trotz said Monday that he was not sure and hinted that perhaps more moves could be coming from general manager Brian MacLellan. Moving Chorney's salary off the books does not clear much cap room, but it does clear some.
Perhaps MacLellan has another move up his sleeve before Monday's trade deadline.