Burgess’ Late 3-Pointer Carries VCU Past Richmond, 77-76

RICHMOND, Va. – Freshman Bradford Burgess (Midlothian, Va.) hit a 3-pointer with 48 seconds left and Virginia Commonwealth University held on for a 77-76 victory over Richmond in the Black and Blue Classic Saturday at the Robins Center.

Burgess, who finished with a career-best 12 points, received a pass from Joey Rodriguez (Oviedo, Fla.) on the right wing and drilled a wide-open look to snap a 74-74 tie.

Kevin Smith hit a layup to pull Richmond within one with 31.5 seconds left. On the ensuing inbounds play, VCU was called for a five-second violation. With time winding down, Richmond’s David Gonzalvez, guarded by Burgess, missed a 15-foot jumper in the lane. The Rams’ Larry Sanders (Fort Pierce, Fla.) hauled in the rebound with 4.5 seconds remaining.

“I thought our will, our heart down the stretch really showed itself,” VCU Head Coach Anthony Grant said. “We had some different guys step up on both ends of the floor and made plays to put us in a position to win the game.”

Senior Eric Maynor (Raeford, N.C.) scored a game-high 23 points, dished out seven assists and ripped four steals for VCU (6-3), which has won five straight between the two city and former conference rivals. Maynor came up with steals in back-to-back possessions to help erase a 71-67 Richmond lead with 4:20 showing.

Sophomore Ed Nixon (St. Petersburg, Fla.) tied a career-high with 11 points, while Rodriguez added nine points, six assists and four steals for the Rams.

Gonzalvez led UR with 19 points and seven rebounds. Kevin Anderson added 16 points for the Spiders.

VCU hit 10-of-19 3-pointers in the game to help offset a 29-24 deficit on the glass.

The Rams return to action on Wednesday, Dec. 17 when they host Akron at the Alltel Pavilion at the Stuart C. Siegel Center at 7:30 p.m.

Matt has been reporting on VCU sports for Ram Nation since 2007 with a focus on news, photos, and feature stories.