VCU Men’s Basketball returned home to the Siegel Center on Saturday in an attempt to turn this 5 game losing funk around versus George Washington. The Black & Gold were already depleted of Corey Douglas, Marcus Evans, and Vince Williams with the newest addition of De’Riante Jenkins inactive due to personal health issues just before tip-off.
Three games remain on VCU’s Atlantic 10 conference slate as the Rams work on gaining some momentum towards Brooklyn for the A-10 Tournament.
“Just stick to the plan. That’s what hurt us during this run. I think we’ve been addressing it over and over…I think we saw it today of just sticking to what we need to do out there.”
Scoring Like Crazy
Offense led the way for the Black & Gold from three with back to back triples by Issac Vann and Mike’l Simms out the gates. Hason Ward made GW feel his presence moments after subbing in for Marcus Santos-Silva with a two-handed jam pushing VCU ahead on the scoreboard.
The threes continued to fall during a 10-0 scoring run for the Rams. Bones Hyland had an uncontested long-range jumper that went swish followed by Simms’ second triple. VCU went 4-for-4 from three to start the game and strumming to the beat alongside Ram Nation up 16-5.
After a 1-of-7 start from the field, GW turned things around on a 7-0 run to regain ground on VCU. Maceo Jack sprinted away on a fastbreak followed by a three from Jamison Battle and a Jameer Nelson jumper. VCU offense froze for nearly 3 minutes as their lead diminished until Simms connected on his third three-pointer of the half.
Rams Are Clear For Take-Off!
VCU took their offense to the rack lead by the dunking power of KeShawn Curry and Hason Ward off the bench. Ward finished a VCU fastbreak with another two-handed slam putting VCU up by 5. Curry followed that with a leap into the air catching the Hyland alley and brought the thunder down upon Siegel Center to absolute delight.
The three-point shot was VCU’s friend in the first half finishing 5-of-9 from range against the Colonials. Simms led the Rams with 11 points and went 3-for-3 from three. VCU held a 32-28 lead over the Colonials heading back into the locker room.
Another Half, Another Scoring Barrage
Hot shooting continued for the Black & Gold starting the 2nd half 6-of-9 from the field on a 11-0 run. Buckets from Santos-Silva and Vann near the basket and Simms connected from three with his fourth three of the day. George Washington hit the wall starting the half 1-of-5 and trailing 15 points.
Curry and Ward as a rim attacking duo continued leading the Black & Gold charge inside. The Colonials could not contain the Rams from anywhere as Malik Crowfield joined Bones for a couple of mid-range jumpers. GW would spend nearly 4 minutes in between field goals while VCU kept their offense on full throttle.
Make Some Noise!
One of the biggest assist arguably came from Coach Rhoades on the sidelines. Rhoades started slamming the media table and amping up the home crowd and VCU fed off that energy to force a GW turnover on a shot clock violation. Simply stating, coach just wanted to have fun playing the game VCU loves again.
“For the rest of the season, no one is gonna have more fun than me. If you come to my level, you’re going to have fun too.”
The Streak Is Over!
A 43-23 scoring advantage fueled the Rams to a 75-51 victory over George Washington breaking their 5 game losing streak in A-10 Play. VCU improved to 8-8 in conference play and 18-11 overall. This was the Black & Gold’s third consecutive win over the Colonials.
Mike’l Simms was VCU’s leading scorer with 14 points including 4 three pointers. Bones Hyland cashed in 13 points including three triples and 4 assists. KeShawn Curry erupted off the VCU bench scoring 13 points and Hason Ward put up 10 additional points. VCU’s bench outscored GW’s bench 33-15.
“It’s been a tough couple of weeks. I’m just really really proud of our guys. You never count out a young man that has a purpose.”
Next Up: Senior Night!
Coming up next for VCU Men’s Basketball is Senior Night versus Duquesne in the Siegel Center. The Rams battle the Dukes in A-10 action for the final home game at the Stu on Tuesday, March 3rd broadcasted on MASN.