It was senior night at the Siegel Center on Wednesday night. That put an added pressure on the three seniors who started the game, as well as the coaches and the rest of the team. Nobody wants to lose on senior night, the last home game for the seniors. After an uneven first half performance, VCU […]
It was senior night at the Siegel Center on Wednesday night. That put an added pressure on the three seniors who started the game, as well as the coaches and the rest of the team. Nobody wants to lose on senior night, the last home game for the seniors.
After an uneven first half performance, VCU played a splendid second 20 minutes at both ends of the floor to defeat UNC-Wilmington: VCU 72, UNC-W 58.
Of what was wrong with the Rams in the first half, which featured some ill-advised lobs and other ball-handling miscues, VCU head coach Anthony Grant spoke of the pressure of senior night: “Sometimes that enthusiasm, that zest, can get the best of you.” Then a happy and relaxed Grant praised his team’s defensive play in the second half.
UNC-W head coach Benny Moss was impressed with the play of VCU, and junior point guard Eric Maynor, in particular. “[He is] the best player in the conference.” Moss had to mention the shot-blocking sensation freshman Larry Sanders has become for the Rams, “…they’ve got an eraser at the bucket.”
VCU seniors Wil Fameni, Michael Anderson and Jamal Shuler combined for 80 minutes of play; together, their stats were 31 points, 10 rebounds and five assists. Maynor scored 16 points and freshman guard Joey Rodriguez added 12. Freshman forward Lance Kearse looked good in his 13 minutes on the floor, scoring seven points and getting four rebounds.
As the Rams pulled away in the second half the Seahawks started banging a little harder, which created some friction, but Grant’s team wasn’t intimidated. That’s a good sign, because at times during the season the Rams have not responded well to rough tactics.
With its win VCU (22-6, 14-3 in CAA) clinched a first-place finish in the regular season CAA standings. And, strangely, after the game the players took turns climbing a ladder and cutting down the net, which marked the first time anyone in the media room could remember seeing a net being cut down on any occasion other than following a tournament win.
Next up for VCU is its last game on the regular season schedule, a 7 p.m tilt at William & Mary (14-14, 10-7 in CAA).