Recap: VCU tops CSU and wins fifth straight

Virginia Commonwealth University led from wire to wire in a 72-63 victory over Cleveland State Monday night.

Virginia Commonwealth University led from wire to wire in a 72-63 victory over Cleveland State Monday night.


Fueled by eight straight Treveon Graham points and a Terry Larrier 3-pointer, VCU jumped out to an 12-0 lead over the Vikings. Those two combined for 21 first half points and maintained the lead throughout the up and down first period. VCU missed a boatload of easy looks and JeQuan Lewis, who has played very well recently, turned the ball over three times. Despite the miscues, VCU took a 32-27 lead into the locker room.

Lewis recovered in the second half and scored nine points on four shots. His inconsistency could cost the Rams a game at some point this season, but the second half was a testament to his offensive potential.

VCU’s lead swelled to as much as 17 points in the second half, but Cleveland State played hard and the game never felt out of reach for the Vikings. Guards Charlie Lee and Trey Lewis combined for 30 points and put on a show in the Siegel Center.

Terry Larrier finished the game with 13 points (1-1 2PFG, 3-6 3PFG). JeQuan Lewis finished with 11 points (2-4 2PFG, 1-1 3PFG). Briante Weber finished with 6 points (2-6 2PFG, 0-3 3PFG), 4 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks, and a steal on his 22nd birthday.

Top performer: Treveon Graham

20 points (5-7 2PFG, 2-4 3PFG), 9 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal

In a game like tonight, he should have gotten more than eleven shot attempts. I need to do a better job and the rest of our players need to do a better job of finding him when he starts off hot like tonight.Coach Smart

Treveon Graham was recruited by two basketball teams: Cleveland State and VCU. After the game, Coach Smart told him he was happy he picked VCU, and with good reason. Treveon Graham is the best player in the Atlantic 10 and he’s still finding ways to get better.

His 3-point shot has improved from .313, .366, and .337 his first three seasons to .448 (30-67) this season. More dramatically, he’s taken care of the basketball at an unprecedented rate. He currently ranks 37th nationally in turnover rate and he hasn’t turned the ball over since VCU’s loss to ODU on November 29th. That’s 217 minutes of action and 111 points without a fumble.

On a night when VCU’s balanced attack felt a little off, Treveon Graham carried VCU to its fifth consecutive W.

5 stats

  • Briante Weber tallied his 343rd career steal which moves him into the top-10 all-time.
  • VCU only tallied 5 turnovers. Four came from JeQuan Lewis and the other came from the team.
  • Vinny Zollo entered the game averaging 3PPG. He went off for a career-high 14 points on a career-high 24 minutes.
  • Terry Larrier started the season 6-of-27 (.222) from 3-point range. Over the last five games he’s 8-of-17 (.471).
  • VCU has won five straight games and hasn’t trailed at all in the past four games.

Looking forward

VCU opens conference play at Fordham on Sunday January 4th at 1:00 PM. The game will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network.

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Aaron Williams

Aaron Williams loves music, basketball (follow @rvaramnews!), family, learning, and barbecue sauce.

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