A Streak Snapped
The Ivy league came to town to kick off a 4 game home stand for VCU and wrap up non-conference play for the Rams. Brown brought a 5 game winning streak to the Siegel Center and after facing an intentionally tough non-conference schedule the Rams were ready for them. The rebounds and resets were key in VCU’s snap of the Bear’s winning record.
Key Difference – Rebounds
The stat sheet was in the opponent’s favor but the challenges and lessons learned from games including Ole Miss and Wake Forest allowed the Rams to play a complete game for 40 minutes. VCU applied their signature pressure and although they’re taught “to put it in the first time” when that failed 23 offensive rebounds gave them an edge. Post players Curteeona Brelove and Bria Gibson were active in the paint contributing 24 out of 50 rebounds and owning the glass. The duo was 1 shy of Brown’s total rebound production.
The Power of Three
The Bears execute well from beyond the arc and they displayed their skill in the first 2 quarters with Megan Reilly, Taylor Will, and Erika Steeves each contributing a deep shot in the first quarter. Shayna Mehta added 2 more in the second quarter. Brown went 5 of 11 in the first half. VCU was able to disrupt their efforts in the second half and limit Brown to 2 of 11. It was enough to take Brown’s average of 37% to just under 32%. While the Rams made significantly fewer attempts their production was much higher. VCU has averaged 29% and ended at 44% for the game ending at 4 of 9 overall. Keira Robinson hit 1 and Isis Thorpe delivered the remaining 3 for the black and gold.
Stand Outs and Team Contributions
Brelove led the Rams with 19 points, 14 rebounds, and 1 block in her 24 minutes of play. Thorpe provided 15 points (including 3 of 5 shooting from beyond the arc), 4 rebounds and 3 assists. Robinson added 13 points and 7 rebounds. Every Ram contributed in some way and EVERY Ram scored. It was a team effort on the court and a great way to end 2016 and non-conference play.
Atlantic 10 play officially begins when the Rams face the La Salle Explorers. Tip-off is set for 1 pm on January 1st at the Siegel Center.
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