RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - VCU used a 13-1 first half run to open up a double-digit lead and shot 57 percent from the floor as the Rams rolled past arch rival Richmond, 81-60, at the Siegel Center on Wednesday night.
It was a back and forth affair in the early going, with Richmond holding a 10-9 lead with 11:56 remaining in the first half. That’s when VCU turned it on, going on that 13-1 spurt to take a 22-11 advantage. The Rams would lead by double digits the rest of the way, taking a 41-25 lead into halftime.
Sean Mobley hit a three out of the second half gate for VCU, but the Spiders followed with a 9-0 run to trim the deficit to 10. However, it seemed as though every time Richmond was able to get close to pulling to within single digits, the Rams would counter with a run of their own. Mike Rhoades saw his team lead by as many as 24 points en route to the lopsided victory.
Issac Vann and Marcus Evans paced VCU with 16 points each. Corey Douglas pulled down nine rebounds, as the Rams won the battle of the boards, 29-24. Highland Springs graduate Mike’l Simms scored 13 big points for Rhoades and company as well, and said he felt a lot better than the last time the Spiders visited the Siegel Center.
“Last year around this time I did media. I was so hurt and upset, man," Simms recalled. “Now I’m so excited, got the win, but I mean I can’t really describe anything, man. I take this game really personally, you know, [being] from Richmond, but it just feels a lot better on the winning end.”
VCU connected on ten three pointers and the Rams outscored Richmond, 28-1, in bench points. They also snapped a two game losing streak to the Spiders, who swept last year’s series.
Richmond got 18 points from Nathan Cayo, 15 from Grant Golden and 14 from Jacob Gilyard.
VCU won its fifth straight game and improved to 18-6 on the season, 9-2 in Atlantic 10 play. The 18 victories match last season’s win total, and the Rams are now tied atop the Atlantic 10 with Davidson. Saturday marks another big showdown for VCU as the Rams head to Dayton for a 4:00 tip-off.
Richmond falls to 10-15, 4-8 in league play. The Spiders are back in action on Wednesday as they host Fordham at 7:00