RICHMOND, Va. Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Senior Eric Maynor (Raeford, N.C.) scored a game-high 23 points to spark Virginia Commonwealth University to a 61-53 win over rival-Old Dominion in a Colonial Athletic Association semifinal game Sunday at the Richmond Coliseum.
The victory sends the Rams (23-9) to the CAA Championship game Monday at 7 p.m. VCU will meet the winner of SundayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s other semifinal between George Mason and Towson. VCU has played in five previous CAA title games, winning three. It last won the title in 2007.
Maynor, the CAAÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Player of the Year the last two seasons, scored 13 of his points in the second half. Sophomore Larry Sanders (Fort Pierce, Fla.) provided his eighth double-double of the season with 12 points and 14 rebounds for VCU.
Frank Hassell led Old Dominion (21-10) with 14 points and six rebounds. Gerald Lee, the MonarchÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s leading scorer and a First Team All-CAA pick, was held to five points on 1-of-7 shooting.
VCU limited ODU to 25-percent shooting (6-of-24) in the second half and just 32 percent overall. The Monarchs were just 1-of-9 from 3-point range on the day.
Maynor and freshman Bradford Burgess (Midlothian, Va.) both hit 3-pointers during a sequence late in the second half that pushed the Black and Gold to a 53-44 advantage with 4:43 left. Old Dominion never recovered.
ODU got off to a quick start, charging to a 23-13 lead behind 10 points from Hassell. At one point in the first half, the Monarchs held a 14-4 rebounding edge. But Maynor scored 10 points during a 12-1 VCU blitz to give the Rams a 25-24 lead.
Old Dominion would take a 28-27 lead into the locker room, following a Marsharee Neely three-point play.
VCU played both George Mason and Towson once this season, winning both games.