Charlottesville, VA (Sports Network) - Joe Harris scored 15 points, one of three in double figures, as the Virginia Cavaliers posted a 54-45 win over the Fairfield Stags as part of the NIT Season Tip-Off at John Paul Jones Arena.
Akil Mitchell accounted for 12 points and eight rebounds and Evan Nolte 11 points off the bench for the Cavaliers (1-1) as they picked up their first win of the season.
The Stags (1-1) were paced by Josip Mikulic who scored 13 points, pulled down seven rebounds and made three blocked shots, followed by Desmond Wade and Derek Needham with 10 points apiece in the setback.
Both teams shot the ball well from the field in the first half, Virginia connecting on 50 percent and the Stags 52.2 percent, with the visitors taking a slim 30-28 advantage at the break thanks to a 6-of-11 effort behind the three-point line.
In the second half Fairfield made just one of 10 attempts beyond the arc and converted a total of only five field goals, opening the door for the Cavaliers to capture the nine-point win.
In addition to tightening up on defense, Virginia also outscored the Stags at the free-throw line, 14-4, in the meeting.
Now a perfect 15-0 against teams from the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Virginia has also won 16 straight home openers.
11/12 22:09:28 ET
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