VILLANOVA, Pa. (AP) Maurice Sutton scored 12 points to lead three Villanova players in double figures as the Wildcats rolled to a season-opening 78-58 victory over District of Columbia on Friday night in the opening round of the 2K Sports Classic.
Ryan Arcidiacono had 11 points and JayVaughn Pinkston scored 10 for the Wildcats, who are trying to bounce back from a disappointing 13-19 record last season.
Quasim Jones netted 13 points to lead the Firebirds, a Division II school coached by former Sixers center Jeff Ruland.
Villanova led by five points at halftime and by two early in the second half. The Wildcats took a 54-37 lead with 12:18 left on back-to-back inside scores by Sutton.
The Wildcats' string of seven straight NCAA tournament appearances ended last season.
Villanova struggled to a 33-28 lead at the half, shooting 11 for 28 from the field, including 4 for 11 from 3-point range.