Justin Sears poured in 15 points for Yale (19-13), which will take on the survivor of the Pacific/Murray State matchup in the championship game on Thursday night. Brandon Sherrod netted 13 points for the visitors and Armani Cotton scored 11.
For VMI (22-13), Rodney Glasgow led all scorers with 20 points to go with seven assists, while D.J. Covington registered 17 points, seven rebounds and five blocks.
With the game tied at 26 with under four minutes to play in the first half, Yale ended the frame on an 11-1 run to carry a 37-27 lead into intermission.
The Bulldogs' advantaged swelled to as many as 15 midway through the second stanza, but while the Keydets battled back to make it a six-point game with under five minutes to play, Yale closed the contest on an 11-4 spurt to seal its fate.
Yale shot 47.3 percent from the field on the evening and outrebounded VMI, 45-27.