Tuesday night at the Siegel Center featured VCU Women’s Basketball in a favorable Atlantic 10 matchup versus La Salle. The Rams went into the contest on a 3 game winning streak while the Explorers were stuck on a 3 game losing skid. VCU went full defensive mode that led to turnovers aplenty being turned into a barrage of points against La Salle.
A Fairly Matched Duel
The first quarter was close out of the gates with La Salle holding the advantage. A 10-6 lead for the Explorers with La Salle shooting 4-of-5 from the field on their first 5 offensive attempts. Taya Robinson kept the Rams in the game with 5 points and brought the game leveled at 10-10 before the media timeout.
VCU went into defensive mode and forced 6 visiting turnovers in less than 6 minutes. Danielle Hammond and Robinson went to work inside the paint to stay within striking distance. The Rams hit a cold streak of nearly 4 minutes without a field goal until Olga Petrova knocked down a jumper with 6 seconds remaining.
A 13-13 tie at the end of the 1st quarter was highlighted with VCU struggling offensively at 33% from the field on 5-of-15 shooting.
Let The Turnover Feast Begin!
Turnovers became a bigger issue for La Salle in the 2nd quarter. VCU’s defense put heavy pressure on the Explorers leading to 17 turnovers in the 1st half. Offense came alive for the Black & Gold scoring 19 points off those La Salle turnovers.
Petrova ignited a VCU 11-0 scoring run with a mid-range jump shot. Madison Hattix-Convington was a force under the rim for VCU with a second chance layup. Following that was damage control at the free throw line by Danielle Hammond and Tera Reed increasing the lead to 34-20. VCU went 9-of-12 from the charity strike in the 1st half.
VCU Could Not Be Stopped
Inside the painted box, VCU established a 16-8 scoring advantage. The Rams kept feeding the ball inside while Reed and Robinson kept sprinting to the bucket for layups. La Salle could not respond offensively and was held to 7 points in the quarter.
Both offenses were held back once play resumed. The 3rd quarter was a dry spell for both VCU and La Salle on offense before the media timeout arrived. Kseniya Malashka got VCU going from downtown which woke up the Rams for a 12-0 point spree lasting over 5 minutes.
Who Said Defense Isn’t Fun?
With a 52-28 lead going into the 4th quarter, VCU defended their way to victory. Turnovers kept burying the Explorers with a season-high 34 total turnovers. Those turnovers fueled VCU with for 35 points with the trio of Hammond, Reed, and Robinson leading the way on offense.
The paint was painted Black & Gold by the end of the contest with a 30-16 point advantage for the Rams. Head coach Beth O’Boyle got point production from her VCU bench with 33 points led by Danielle Hammond with 10 points and 7 rebounds. Tera Reed led the VCU starters with 12 points and Taya Robinson put up an additional 10 points.
Staying With The A-10 Pack
VCU improved to 2-0 in Atlantic 10 play with a defensive showcase in the 68-38 victory over La Salle. The Rams improved to 10-5 overall and increase their current streak to 4 consecutive victories.
Next up for VCU Women’s Basketball is a rivalry at Richmond in the Robins Center against the Spiders. That game takes place on Saturday, January 12th at 6 PM.