Melvin Johnson scored 19 points, including a clutch three pointer to give VCU the lead with 5:01 remaining in the game, as the Rams spoiled Middle Tennessee State's home opener, 62-56.
The two teams would battle back and forth during most of this game, with VCU holding a slim 30-28 advantage at halftime. The Blue Raiders would come out firing in the second half, opening up a seven point lead when Reggie Upshaw drove the baseline and finished with a dunk at the 13:57 mark, putting the home team on top, 41-34.
VCU did not have a particularly good shooting night, but chipped away. The Rams would not trail again after Johnson's late three pointer, but MTSU would tie the game up at 52. Five straight points by Korey Billbury provided the dagger Will Wade and company were looking for, and the Rams iced it at the free throw line down the stretch.
The Rams won their third straight game to improve to 5-2 on the season and top the Raiders in Murfreesboro, where they were 57-8 in the last four seasons coming in. MTSU was 12-4 at home last season.
Johnson added five assists to his 19 points, while JeQuan Lewis chipped in 14 points in his return to his home state. Billbury scored eleven points and pulled down seven rebounds.
Wade's club shot 31.7 percent from the floor, but still managed to escape with a victory.
VCU returns to action on Sunday, when the Rams take on Florida State in Atlanta.