MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Virginia recruited Takisha Granberry because she could slash to the basket and pass. The 3-point shooting was a bonus.
Brandi Teamer scored 17 of her 23 points in the second half, Granberry hit two key 3-pointers to help break it open and Virginia celebrated its return to the NCAA Tournament after a one-year absence with a 79-57 first-round victory over Old Dominion on Saturday night.
The sixth-seeded Cavaliers (21-10) also got 16 points from Tiffany Sardin, who has re-emerged as an offensive force after averaging only 2.8 points during the ACC season.
Virginia advanced to the second round of the Tempe Regional on Monday night against the winner of Saturday's late game between Minnesota and St. Francis, Pa.
Shareese Grant scored 16 points to lead 11th-seeded Old Dominion (22-9), which faded after a fast start and ended up shooting just 34.2 percent.
The game matched two of the most successful programs in the women's game, longtime neighborhood rivals who had to travel more than 1,200 miles to settle this one. Old Dominion was making its 22nd appearance in the NCAA Tournament and Virginia its 21st; both have three Final Four trips.
Virginia beat Old Dominion during the regular season and won this one because it weathered a torrid start by Lady Monarchs, kept Grant under control after she had scored 35 points in the finals of the Colonial Athletic Association tournament and got some big plays from Granberry, Teamer and Sardin in the second half.
Old Dominion was trailing just 43-39 when Granberry, a freshman shooting 28 percent from 3-point range, hit a 3 from the left corner. A minute later, she hit another 3 from the left side and then lobbed a pass Teamer for a layup, starting a 12-4 run that stretched the lead to 58-44.
After that, the Cavaliers just pounded the ball inside to the 6-foot-2 Teamer and she responded with baskets or free throws. Teamer finished 7-for-10 from the field, made all nine of her free throws and grabbed 10 rebounds.
Sardin also went 7-for-10 with two 3-pointers, the second giving Virginia a 71-52 lead with just under five minutes to play. She has scored in double figures in three straight games now after doing that only once in the previous 28.
Old Dominion jumped to an 18-7 lead by making nine of its first 15 shots, but the Cavaliers kept their cool and stayed with their game. They continued to work the ball patiently and crash the boards and eventually, it turned around: Virginia's shots started to fall and Old Dominion's didn't.
LaTonya Blue's 3-pointer got the Cavaliers started and they went on a 17-2 run while Old Dominion was missing 7-of-8 shots. Virginia also started getting to the free-throw line, making six straight in that stretch to open a 24-20 lead. The Cavaliers never trailed again.