In the first two Richmond-VCU meetings, the Rams won, but the Spiders kept it close. Friday, that wasn’t the case.
After two very competitive battles during the season, Virginia Commonwealth University ran past the University of Richmond 71-53 Friday night in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 Tournament in Brooklyn.
In February, the Rams beat the Spiders in the Siegel Center but Kendall Antony scored 31 points and kept the game close. Eight days ago, Anthony scored 20 points and the Rams won a defensive battle in the Robins Center, 56-50.
Friday, Kendall Anthony and the Spiders struggled to score while VCU abused Richmond on the offensive glass and got out and ran to victory. Anthony finished with seven points on 2-of-15 shooting, and the Rams grabbed 19 offensive rebounds.
In the first half, everyone not named Briante Weber struggled to hit shots. In the second half, Mo Alie-Cox asserted his physical dominance, and VCU’s deep bench scored plenty of points. As is his style, Treveon Graham scored a quiet 14 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Melvin Johnson finished with 13 points.
Top performer: Briante Weber
18 points (8-10 FGs), 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 0 turnovers, 1 foul
Briante Weber had 16 points, 4 rebounds, 2 steals, and an assist in the first half. He finished 7-of-8 from the field with his only miss being a heave to end the half.
Earlier this week, Weber was named the Atlantic 10 defensive player of the year but was excluded from any of the three All A-10 teams. Seeing as how defense is half of basketball, the decision is surprising.
Weber scored the Rams’ first six points and probably left a few of the voting coaches scratching their heads as he played one of the best and most confident games of his career. When he wasn’t driving the lane hitting midrange jumpers, he was hitting three pointers and throwing beautiful no look passes.
The performance was reminiscent of Darius Theus’s 2012 CAA Tournament when he didn’t receive any regular season honors but earned the Most Outstanding Player award.
If Briante Weber can maintain some of that magic for the rest of the weekend, the Rams will be in a great position to cut down the nets.
- VCU is now 7-0 vs. teams from Virginia this season.
- Rob Brandenberg has just 4 turnovers in his last 286 minutes of gameplay.
- In the previous UR-VCU matchup, Weber posted an offensive rating of 55 and had 4 fouls. Friday he posted a 183 rating and only fouled once.
- In VCU’s loss to UMass on 2/21, Briante Weber had 6 turnovers. He has 6 turnovers in the last five games and VCU is 5-0.
- Richmond responded to losing Cedrick Lindsay by going 4-1. Since then they are 1-5.
#2 VCU will face the winner of #3 George Washington and #6 Massachusetts at 4:00 PM on Saturday. The game will be on CBS Sports Network.
— ∮∮∮ —
- What to expect: Richmond vs. VCU…round 3
- What to expect: Black and Blue Classic 1.0
- Recap: Frenzy and a complete Weber down UR
- What to expect: VCU looks for first win at Richmond since 2009
- Recap: VCU tops UR and sweeps the Commonwealth