Saturday at the Siegel Center was a critical moment for VCU’s Men’s Basketball versus Saint Bonaventure. The Rams dropped two consecutive Atlantic 10 games to drop into the middle of the A-10 standings at 2-2. Against the Bonnies and adversity, VCU had fun at home and let things loose.
“Even when we go through adversity we just always come back together, go back to practice and get back to the drawing board.”
–Bones Hyland, VCU Freshman Guard
The Bone Yard
Bones Hyland filled the starting Point Guard spot for VCU due to Marcus Evans being sidelined with a concussion and the flu. Bones quickly cashed in on the opportunity with two consecutive three-pointers springing the Rams ahead of the Bonnies early.
Saint Bonaventure cooled off missing six consecutive shots as VCU started an 11-0 run. The hot hand of Bones from three struck once again for his third to begin the scoring festivities. Buckets from Marcus Santos-Silva followed and KeShawn Curry found Corey Douglas on an alley-oop finish. Curry added an And-1 layup over Alejandro Vasquez putting the Rams ahead 22-8. VCU was playing comfortably without the added pressure and Vann believes that helps the team tremendously.
“Just get back to being ourselves and having fun. Throughout the year we’ve been putting pressure on ourselves to win games. So just getting out there and have fun.”
–Issac Vann, VCU Senior Forward
Rollin’, Rollin’, Rollin’
That run increased to 18-0 after Coach Schmidt burned a 30-second timeout. Hason Ward was led to the basket by Curry for an And-1 two-handed jam that had Siegel Center deafening. Following that was Mike’l Simms burying his first bucket from three-point land. After nearly 6 minutes without a bucket, Bobby Planutis answered the Bonnies’ prayers with a much-needed layup.
The three-ball continued to fall for the Black & Gold in the first half. VCU found their man in Hyland as he knocked down his fourth of the half putting VCU up 20 points. He was called upon once again for his fifth to tie his career-high at 17 points in the first half. The shooting was great for the Black & Gold behind the arc at 58% on 7-of-12 shooting at the three.
There’s Another Half After This?
Marcus Santos-Silva did extra damage control in the paint with 11 points and 7 rebounds; VCU had a 20-12 scoring advantage in the paint. The struggle was real for Saint Bonaventure limited to 29% from the field and 13% behind the three. A showcase of the immortals for VCU with a 52-24 lead going back into the locker rooms at halftime.
After some halftime adjustments, Saint Bonaventure started the 2nd half with a 10-6 scoring advantage before the under-16 timeout. A pair or jumpers by Jaren English and buckets from Amadi Ikpeze gave the Bonnies hope towards cutting VCU’s massive lead.
Quick Slip Then Clean-Up
VCU had a rough start with shooting and turnovers. The Rams had only 4 turnovers in the first half and doubled their turnover tally just 6 minutes into the second. Bones, Curry, and Santos-Silva found buckets however as a team VCU shot 5-of-12 from the field in the opening minutes.
Coach Rhoades found a working formula on offense involving Tre Clark, De’Riante Jenkins, and Heson Ward. Ward kept dunking over the Bonnies at the rim while Clark and Jenkins drove the ball to the rack repeatedly. Jenkins kept Siegel Center buzzing on his first three-pointer putting VCU ahead by 30.
Saturday Fun & Coach 300!
All smiles and fun amongst VCU defeating Saint Bonaventure 91-63 to end their 2 game losing skid and improve to 3-2 in A-10 Play. Bones Hyland scored a career-high 21 points on 5-of-6 from three. Marcus Santos-Silva captured his seventh double-double of 17 points and 11 rebounds. Issac Vann was the third Ram in double figures scoring 10 points.
HAVOC held the Bonnies to their lowest field goal percentage in conference play at 35% The Bonnies shot 17% from three on 3-of-18 attempts. Inside the paint was all Black & Gold with 48 points. VCU bench came up with 33 of the team’s 91 points. This win was career win number 300 for Coach Rhoades.
“What’s really cool about it is all the people that I’ve been with through them all. At Randolph Macon as head coach at 25. At Rice took over a program nobody thought we could win at. And here (at VCU) a dream job. That’s what’s cool.”
Injury Report & What’s Next
- Marcus Evans is under concussion protocol along with flu symptoms and is day-to-day. Working to be cleared for Tuesday.
- Vince Williams will be out for 4 weeks due to a broken hand; surgery will not be required.
- Mailk Crowfield returned to the court after an 8-week absence but is still under doctor’s provision with limited minutes.
VCU goes back on the road on Tuesday, January 21st in their next Atlantic 10 game at Saint Joseph’s (0-5 A-10). That game will begin at 9:00 PM on CBS Sports Network.