Rodriguez Dials Long Distance on William & Mary, 66-50

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – Sophomore Joey Rodriguez (Oviedo, Fla.) drilled 6-of-7 3-pointers and finished with a career-high 20 points to spur Virginia Commonwealth University to a 66-50 victory over William & Mary Saturday at Kaplan Arena.

VCU has won two straight to improve to 5-3 on the year. William & Mary is 3-6. This was the Colonial Athletic Association opener for both teams.

Rodriguez, a 5-10 guard, knocked down 3-of-3 treys in the second half, when the Rams used a 30-8 blitz to pull away for the victory.

“He’s worked extremely hard all season and all offseason, in terms of his shooting” VCU Head Coach Anthony Grant said of Rodriguez’s performance. “It’s hard work, as well as being the beneficiary of his teammates getting him open looks.”

“But to judge whether or not Joey had a good game based on how he shoots the ball, I don’t think that’s fair. I’m more excited about the energy he brings. As we all know, sometimes shots fall, sometimes they don’t. It’s how you affect other parts of the game.”

Senior Eric Maynor (Raeford, N.C.) added 15 points and dished out six assists for VCU. Maynor also moved past Bernard Harris and into sole possession of 12th place on the school’s career scoring list with 1,384 points.

Sophomores Larry Sanders (Fort Pierce, Fla.) and Brandon Rozzell (Richmond, Va.) added eight points each for the Black and Gold.

Danny Sumner scored 18 points to lead the Tribe.

David Schneider knocked down a 3-pointer to give William & Mary a 36-34 lead with 14:10 remaining. It would be the Tribe’s last lead of the game.

On the ensuing play, VCU sophomore Ed Nixon (St. Petersburg, Fla.) buried a 3-pointer to recapture the lead and spark a 14-0 Black and Gold run.

VCU limited William & Mary to just 28-percent (8-of-29) shooting in the second half, including 1-of-9 from 3-point range.

The Rams return to action on Saturday, Dec. 13 when they meet Richmond at 2 p.m. in the Farm Bureau Insurance Black and Blue Classic at the Robins Center. That contest will be televised by ESPNU.

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