VCU (2-0) narrowly escaped a tough early season challenge from North Texas, 59-56.
Back-to-back three-pointers from the Mean Green put the Rams on the receiving end of a 19-11 deficit at the midpoint of the first half.
But, a three pointer from Malik Crowfield would signal the beginning of the North Texas introduction to Havoc.
VCU closed the final 9:22 of the first half on a 20-2 run.
Over the same time period, VCU’s suffocating defense forced North Texas into 9 turnovers.
The Mean Green would end the night with 18 turnovers; leading to 20 points for the Rams.
Crowfield ended the evening with 6 points—both from beyond the three-point line.
North Texas wasn’t done yet, and would fight back in the second half to take the 1 point, 48-47, lead with just over 5 minutes to play in the game.
A pair of free throws from De’Riante Jenkins would pull the Rams back on top 49-48 with 5:06 remaining.
Hometown guard, Mike’l Simms, then put in back-to-back three’s for the Rams; effectively countering the two three-pointers landed by North Texas guards, DJ Draper and Umoja Gibson, respectively.
Draper ended the night with 12 points for the Mean Green—their leading scorer on the night.
Moments after missing two free throws as VCU clung to a one point lead, Marcus Evans came up with the biggest steal of the game. Before he could be fouled he passed the ball to teammate, Jenkins, who was then fouled by Draper.
Evans led all-scorers with 13 points in the box score.
Jenkins made both free throws for VCU, pushing the lead back to a three point margin. He was a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line on the evening.
North Texas wasn’t able to get a shot off before the clock expired as VCU defense seemed to collapse on ever pass.
Jenkins ended the night with 12 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 assist.
VCU returns to action Wednesday, Nov. 13th as they host LSU, and former VCU coach Will Wade. That game is set to tip at 6pm EST and will be broadcast on ESPN2.