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No. 4 Virginia routs Syracuse 75-56 for 1st in ACC

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Syracuse forward Rakeem Christmas (25) watches his dunk during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Syracuse forward Rakeem Christmas (25) watches his dunk during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim watches his team during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Virginia guard Malcolm Brogdon (15) and Syracuse forward C.J. Fair (5) fight for a rebound during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Virginia guard Malcolm Brogdon, center, takes a shot over Syracuse center Baye-Moussa Keita (12) and Syracuse guard Tyler Ennis (11) during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Syracuse guard Tyler Ennis (11) puts up a shot over Virginia forward Anthony Gill (13) during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Malcolm Brogdon scored eight of his 19 points during a decisive second-half run and No. 12 Virginia clinched the top seed in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament by beating No. 4 Syracuse 75-56 on Saturday.

Akil Mitchell added 12 points and nine rebounds and Mike Tobey and Justin Anderson scored 11 each for the Cavaliers (25-5, 16-1 ACC), who won their only outright ACC regular season title 33 years ago — 1980-81 — when Ralph Sampson was a sophomore. The victory was their 13th in a row and the final buzzer brought hundreds streaming onto the court.

Tyler Ennis and C.J. Fair scored 13 each for the Orange (26-3, 13-3), who lost for the third time in four games. Syracuse played much of the game without ailing Jerami Grant because of a sore back.

As they have so often this season, Virginia took command with a second-half spree fed in part by its defense, and in part by a celebrating sell-out crowd, many of whom stood throughout the second half.

Brogdon broke a 42-all tie with two free throws, and then hit a jumper from the foul line. After a turnover by the Orange, London Perrantes hit a deep 3-pointer that gave the Cavaliers a 49-42 lead.

Rakeem Christmas’ dunk after a Syracuse timeout quieted the crowd, but only for a minute because Anderson made a 3-pointer from the right side, Brogdon followed an Orange miss with a jumper and then followed another miss with a jumper. The lead was 56-45 with 5:15 remaining and fans sensed that the Cavaliers were in the process of putting the game away.

Ennis, playing with four fouls, hit a pair of free throws to slow the run, but Joe Harris hit a free throw, and then followed a Syracuse miss with a 3-pointer, his first basket in nine tries, causing the crowd to erupt in appreciation for the four-year starter. Harris was removed with 38.9 seconds left to a deafening cheer at Jones Paul Jones Arena.

Virginia had first-half runs on 9-0 and 8-2 in building a 22-15 lead, but a jumper by Faor and Ennis’ 3-pointer — the first of the game — with 5:14 left in the half sparked 13-2 burst for the Orange.

Cooney, who had missed 22 of his last 27 3-point shots, and Richmond native Michael Gbinije then connected back-to-back from beyond the arc for Syracuse, and Rakeem Christmas’ dunk made it 28-24.

Justin Anderson hit a 3, Virginia’s first, with 47 seconds left and it was 28-27 at the half.

Follow Hank on twitter at: http://twitter.com/hankkurzjr

Associated Press

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No. 4 Virginia routs Syracuse 75-56 for 1st in ACC

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Syracuse forward Rakeem Christmas (25) watches his dunk during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Syracuse forward Rakeem Christmas (25) watches his dunk during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim watches his team during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Virginia guard Malcolm Brogdon (15) and Syracuse forward C.J. Fair (5) fight for a rebound during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Virginia guard Malcolm Brogdon, center, takes a shot over Syracuse center Baye-Moussa Keita (12) and Syracuse guard Tyler Ennis (11) during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Syracuse guard Tyler Ennis (11) puts up a shot over Virginia forward Anthony Gill (13) during the first half of an NCAA College basketball game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — Malcolm Brogdon scored eight of his 19 points during a decisive second-half run and No. 12 Virginia clinched the top seed in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament by beating No. 4 Syracuse 75-56 on Saturday.

Akil Mitchell added 12 points and nine rebounds and Mike Tobey and Justin Anderson scored 11 each for the Cavaliers (25-5, 16-1 ACC), who won their only outright ACC regular season title 33 years ago — 1980-81 — when Ralph Sampson was a sophomore. The victory was their 13th in a row and the final buzzer brought hundreds streaming onto the court.

Tyler Ennis and C.J. Fair scored 13 each for the Orange (26-3, 13-3), who lost for the third time in four games. Syracuse played much of the game without ailing Jerami Grant because of a sore back.

As they have so often this season, Virginia took command with a second-half spree fed in part by its defense, and in part by a celebrating sell-out crowd, many of whom stood throughout the second half.

Brogdon broke a 42-all tie with two free throws, and then hit a jumper from the foul line. After a turnover by the Orange, London Perrantes hit a deep 3-pointer that gave the Cavaliers a 49-42 lead.

Rakeem Christmas’ dunk after a Syracuse timeout quieted the crowd, but only for a minute because Anderson made a 3-pointer from the right side, Brogdon followed an Orange miss with a jumper and then followed another miss with a jumper. The lead was 56-45 with 5:15 remaining and fans sensed that the Cavaliers were in the process of putting the game away.

Ennis, playing with four fouls, hit a pair of free throws to slow the run, but Joe Harris hit a free throw, and then followed a Syracuse miss with a 3-pointer, his first basket in nine tries, causing the crowd to erupt in appreciation for the four-year starter. Harris was removed with 38.9 seconds left to a deafening cheer at Jones Paul Jones Arena.

Virginia had first-half runs on 9-0 and 8-2 in building a 22-15 lead, but a jumper by Faor and Ennis’ 3-pointer — the first of the game — with 5:14 left in the half sparked 13-2 burst for the Orange.

Cooney, who had missed 22 of his last 27 3-point shots, and Richmond native Michael Gbinije then connected back-to-back from beyond the arc for Syracuse, and Rakeem Christmas’ dunk made it 28-24.

Justin Anderson hit a 3, Virginia’s first, with 47 seconds left and it was 28-27 at the half.

Follow Hank on twitter at: http://twitter.com/hankkurzjr

Associated Press

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