RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Will Wade entered the Siegel Center floor moments before tip-off to a chorus of boos, and departed after the final buzzer to the same enthusiasm. In between, VCU fans had plenty to cheer about.
Marcus Santos-Silva scored 17 points and grabbed eleven rebounds and the Rams forced LSU into 26 turnovers, holding off the Tigers, 84-82, on Wednesday night. VCU handed the No. 23 Tigers their first loss of the season and improved to 5-2 against ranked teams in its current home.
LSU opened the game on a 6-0 run, but VCU charged back to tie the game at 13 with 12:09 remaining in the half. The Rams would open up the score thanks to an 18-4 run late in the half and go into the break holding a 50-38 advantage.
The Tigers would not go away, however, opening the second half on a 25-14 spurt to close the gap and eventually would tie the game. Back and forth play down the stretch kept the game close the rest of the way, with VCU at one point opening up a seven point lead, only to see LSU come back to tie it again.
De’Riante Jenkins made two free throws to put the Rams on top, 83-82, with 26 seconds remaining, and Santos-Silva added another foul shot to double the lead with four ticks left on the clock. LSU got one final shot to tie or win the game, but Skyler Mays lost control of the ball to seal the win for VCU.
In addition to Santos-Silva’s big night, Jenkins and Marcus Evans added 15 points each, while Issac Vann and Vince Williams each chipped in eleven points. Mays led all scorers with 23 points.
VCU scored 37 points off of the Tigers’ 26 turnovers and finished the night with 14 steals.
The win marks VCU’s first victory over a ranked opponent under Mike Rhoades. It was the Rams’ 14th straight home win and 137th consecutive sellout.
VCU improves to 3-0 and will host Jacksonville State at the Siegel Center on Sunday at noon.
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