VCU snapped No.23 Northern Iowa’s nine-game winning streak while avenging a road loss from last season in tonight’s 93-87 double-overtime win.
UNI couldn’t miss early, hitting their first four threes of the game to take an early 20-11 lead. The Rams battled back however with five quick Treveon Graham points in 24 seconds followed by a Melvin Johnson bucket and JeQuan Lewis three-pointer to tie the game in an 11-2 run over just over one minute of play.
The Rams took a two-point lead into the half and stretched the lead to 11 with 6:19 to play but didn’t hit a field goal over the next three minutes, giving the Panthers an opportunity to cut the lead to one.
Then, with 50 seconds to play UNI’s Matt Bohannon connected on a three to give UNI a 73-71 lead, their first of the half. Treveon Graham tied the game with 37 seconds to play then the Rams were able to stop one last UNI attempt to win, sending the game into overtime.
With the game tied at 83, Graham had a chance to win it for VCU as the Rams held for one final shot. Treveon’s three was no good sending the game to double-overtime where the Rams would outscore the Panthers 10-4 after reserve Doug Brooks connected on a three to start the final period of the night.
Brooks made a number of key plays on offense and defense and played a career-high 20 minutes after not getting into the game the night before. The sophomore finished with five points on 2-2 shooting and added four rebounds but his biggest impact goes beyond the stat sheet as the Lake Wales, Florida native gave VCU some serious defensive minutes off the bench.
Treveon Graham led VCU with a team-high 21-point, 11-rebound double-double. The senior was 6-13 from the field and added three assists and a steal in the win.
Senior backcourt mate Briante Weber added 14 points for VCU and grabbed a game-high six steals.
VCU’s freshmen were all solid when in the game but it was the duo of Justin Tillman and Terry Larrier that left the biggest impression on the stat sheet. Larrier posted nine points in nine minutes of play, connecting on two three-pointers as well as an old-fashioned three-point play. Tillman added eight points on 4-5 shooting in 16 minutes, grabbed three rebounds a steal and a block for VCU.
The Rams shot 47.1% from the field but needed every bit of it against a hot-handed UNI team who hit 45.8% of their 24 three-pointers. VCU forced 16 UNI turnovers in the double-OT marathon to 11 of their own.
The win moves VCU to 6-3 on the season heading into a Tuesday night matchup against a tough Belmont team. Game tips at 7PM at the Stuart C. Siegel Center.