Thursday, January 17, 2008

Rams trample Hens

What was the No. 1 team in the Colonial Athletic Association, the Delaware Blue Hens, came to VCU’s home court on Wednesday night to meet the league’s No. 2 team. After the game, on their way back to Newark, Delaware, the Hens must have felt like they had run into a brick wall in Richmond, as Delaware managed to hit only 13 field goals in the game: VCU 60, Delaware 39.

The game wasn’t as close as the score might indicate.

The Rams defense harassed the Hens into 21 turnovers, while allowing them only five assists. VCU’s defense in its last three games has been outstanding. In this game, before a crowd of 6,877 at the Siegel Center, the home team led for all but the initial three-and-a-half minutes. Delaware got its only three-pointer with two seconds on the clock. The Hens were simply overmatched.

VCU leads the Colonial in scoring defense, holding opponents to 58 points per game. Now VCU (12-4, 5-1 in CAA) is atop the CAA standings. Delaware (8-8, 5-1 in CAA) slides down to No. 2, although it remains tied with VCU with an identical record in conference games.

“We’re learning with every game,” said a relaxed Anthony Grant, the Rams head coach. “We’re a work-in-progress, still getting better as a team.”

The Rams offense had been in a two-game slump, but showed some spark last night. Senior guard Jamal Shuler led all scorers wit 21 points; he also and grabbed six boards. Freshman forward Larry Sanders had eight points, nine rebounds and five blocks.

VCU’s next game is in Norfolk against ODU (9-9, 4-2 in CAA) at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

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