Rhode Island used 49 first half points, including a 27-5 run, to give them all the cushion they needed to beat VCU, 87-75. The win gives Rhode Island the season sweep over VCU (16-6; 6-3 A10)and possession of any tiebreak should the two teams end the regular season tied.
VCU managed to put together a 24-5 run in the second half, and even clawed back to a single digit 9-point deficit, but every effort was met by a URI dagger.
Freshman Bones Hyland led the way for VCU with 16 points on 6-12 shooting overall.
Issac Vann was the only other VCU Ram with double digit scoring as the senior put up 13 points to go with his four rebounds.
Rhode Island point guard Fatts Russell led all-scorers with 30 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists.
Russell also knocked down 16 of his 18 free throw attempts.
VCU took a total of 18 free throw shots for the entire game—as a team VCU connected on only 10 of their attempts for 56%.
Rhode Island scored 26 of the points from the free throw line. They were 26-33 on the night for 79% on the night.
VCU struggled on the glass as well as they were out-rebounded 38-22.
URI scored 16 second chance points off of 16 offensive rebounds.
Overall, VCU shot the ball from the floor better, 30-54 for 57%, including a 69% second half performance.
VCU also scored 50 of their 75 total points in the paint.
In the end though, URI had built up too much of a cushion in the first half to be overcome.
VCU will return to action Friday, February 7th, as they return home to host the Wildcats of Davidson. That game is set to tip at 7pm EST and will be broadcast on ESPN2.