Both of Richmond's Atlantic 10 teams, the VCU Rams and the Richmond Spiders, won their conference games on Saturday and overall it wasn't as difficult as some thought.
VCU 90 Duquesne 63
VCU won 90-63 over Duquesne in what must have looked like an empty cave as today's game was played in a huge venue: where the Pittsburgh Penguins play when they're actually playing. They put a modest crowd of 6,278 people in it. It might have felt like some of their friends were missing in the 19,000 seat venue: maybe they should have put some Penguins in those extra seats.
VCU ran up a 44-18 lead by halftime and in the second half the teams traded baskets mostly. The number 19 VCU Rams weren't looking like they could be challenged by Duquesne on paper and though the Dukes were 6-2 at home this VCU team brought a big challenge: team speed. They were able to get open 3-pointers all night and were 12-31 overall from long range. After halftime the only question to onlookers was what the margin of victory would be.
Game Numbers: VCU v. Duquesne
- Double-figure scorers, VCU: Rob Brandenburg (22 points), Juvonte Reddic (16) and Treveon Graham (20 points)
- Double-figure scorers, Duquesne: Derrick Colter (15 points)
Richmond 81 Charlotte 61
Charlotte came into the game against the University of Richmond Spiders with daunting numbers: on paper. So they threw out the paper and played the game and the Spiders won easily and I was sort of amazed. I expected a game in the low sixties for each team.
Of course, this Richmond Spiders team, now 12-7, 2-2 just doesn't lose at home very much and they won tonight against the now 15-3, 3-1 49ers without their number two scorer Derrick Williams. Their number one, Darien Brothers, poured in 39 points in an amazing offensive performance. He was 10-14 in field goals, 8-11 on 3s and 11-12 in free throws: he looks to be the Player of the Week on someone's sports page come Monday. This Charlotte team wasn't giving up points this year and had a lofty won-loss record so the 20 point loss is eye-opening. The Spiders are now 10-1 this year at home with only a close loss to George Mason blemishing their record.
The Spiders' 10-point halftime lead was cut in half about 5 minutes into the second half and that's as close as the 49ers got as Richmond bombed 3-pointers, going 12-27 as a team. They were also 19-23 from the free throw line.
Game Numbers: Richmond v. Charlotte
- Double-figure scorers, Richmond: Darien Brothers (39 points), Deion Taylor (13 points) and Kendall Anthony (12 points)
- Double-figure scorers, Charlotte: Pierria Henry (18 points), DeMario Mayfield (11 points)