Joey Rodriguez came out with guns-a-blazing, scoring 18 of his 24 points in the first half of VCU’s 76-62 victory over the JMU Dukes.
The game was a battle of styles as VCU’s guards traded baskets with JMU’s Denzel Bowles, who went off for 31 points on 13-17 shooting.
VCU’s backcourt proved to be too much for the Duke’s in front of a packed senior night crowd, as Rodriguez, Ed Nixon (10), Bradford Burgess (16), and Brandon Rozzell (10) were able to hit the big shots when it mattered most.
The win moves VCU to 20-7 on the year, 11-6 in the CAA, which is currently good enough for 4th place.
The Black and Gold moved up the rankings after both William & Mary and Drexel dropped home games to CAA bottom feeders.
Currently, VCU owns the tie-breaker over William and Mary having won it’s game against the CAA’s top team, ODU. VCU can wrap the 4th seed up with a win over ODU.
A win would give VCU the tie-breaker over the Tribe as it would put VCU at 2-2 against the teams tied for first (if Northeastern wins at George Mason). William and Mary finished 1-2 against ODU and Northeastern this season.
VCU’s last win in Norfolk was by 10 points just two seasons ago.