2022 NCAA Tournament: Hot-shooting Tennessee overwhelms Longwood
Photo: Jamie Sabau/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Tennessee shot 60 percent from the floor and hit 14 three-pointers as the third-seeded Volunteers crushed 14th seed Longwood 88-56 in the first round of the 2022 NCAA Tournament.

The 60 percent from the floor was a program record for an NCAA Tournament game. Santiago Vescovi led five Tennessee players in double figures with 18.

Josiah Jordan-James had 17, 15 of those coming in the first half to go along with nine rebounds. John Fulkerson scored 15, his highest total since December.

Justin Hill led Longwood with 13 points while DeShaun Wade added 10. The Lancers finish their season, which saw them win the Big South regular-season and tournament titles for the first time, at 26-7.

"Obviously today isn't the way we wanted to play it out, but in no way does it take away from the season our guys had this year", said head coach Griff Aldrich.

"I told them in the locker room how proud I was of what they accomplished this year. It's a special, special season and a special group of guys and I could not be more proud."

Story of the game

Longwood kept pace early on as the Lancers were trailing only by one at 16-15 nine minutes into the game. Tennessee then went on a game-changing 13-2 run to extend the lead to 29-17.

Longwood's DeShaun Wade tries to drive by Tennessee's Santiago Vescovi in their first-round <strong><a  data-cke-saved-href='https://vavel.com/en-us/ncaa/2022/03/19/college-basketball/1105768-2022-ncaa-tournament-providence-cruises-past-richmond-to-reach-sweet-16.html' href='https://vavel.com/en-us/ncaa/2022/03/19/college-basketball/1105768-2022-ncaa-tournament-providence-cruises-past-richmond-to-reach-sweet-16.html'>NCAA Tournament</a></strong> game/Photo: Dylan Buell/Getty Images
Longwood's DeShaun Wade tries to drive by Tennessee's Santiago Vescovi in their first-round NCAA Tournament game/Photo: Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The Volunteers went on another big run, scoring 13 consecutive points over the final 3:13 of the half to take a 54-29 advantage into the locker room.

Forcing 12 Lancers turnovers while committing just two, the SEC champions set a season-high for points in a first half while assisting on 18 of their 20 field goals.

Longwood shot just 38.5 percent from the floor and committed 16 turnovers in their first-ever tournament appearance.

The lead was never fewer than 10 as Tennessee cruised into a second-round matchup with 11th seed Michigan, who upset sixth seed Colorado State.