The Tigers, who had dropped back-to-back games to CAA co-leaders George Mason and Northeastern, battled VCU on nearly-even terms for most of the evening. But, the Rams slowly built upon a 47-43 lead with 12:51 remaining and seemed to have clinched a win when a three-point basket by senior guard Eric Maynor gave VCU a 70-55 lead with 4:05 left in the game.
Maynor, the CAA’s Pre-Season Player of the Year, led all scorers in the contest. The CAA’s scoring leader, he tallied 27 points on 8-for-14 shooting from the floor and four-of-seven shooting from three-point range. Maynor, who was 7-for-8 at the foul line, also had a game high nine assists.
“When you play VCU, the big factor is how you control Eric Maynor,” said Towson Coach Pat Kennedy. “He really hurt us tonight.”
Trailing by 70-55, the Tigers picked themselves up, dusted themselves off and staged a furious comeback. Over the next three minutes,
With 40 seconds left, sophomore guard Joey Rodriguez gave the Rams some breathing room when he made a pair of free throws, giving VCU a 75-69 advantage. A short jumper by sophomore Jarrel Smith with 31 seconds left pulled
But, the Tigers could not get any closer as Rodriguez connected on three of four free throw attempts in the final 28 seconds.
Led by Maynor, who scored eight points in the final 4:37 of the first half, the Rams took a 37-32 lead at halftime by outscoring the Tigers by 10-5 in the final minutes of the half.
Maynor led VCU with 14 points and five assists before intermission as VCU overcame an early five-point deficit. After
But, the Tigers chipped away at the lead and tied the game at 27-27 with 5:03 remaining on a steal and fast break layup by
“Our guys did a great job of coming back,” added Kennedy. “But those six and a half minutes in the first half when we didn’t score a field goal was the pivotal point.”
After halftime, VCU held
In the second half, VCU protected its lead by shooting 52 per cent from the floor. The Rams made 13 of 25 field goal attempts.
While Maynor led VCU with 27 points, the Rams placed three other players in double figures. Larry Sanders, a 6-10 sophomore, scored 13 points and had 10 rebounds as he posted his fifth “double double” of the season. Junior Kirill Pishchainikov added 12 points and seven rebounds as he made 6 of 9 shots from the floor. Rodriguez added 11 points and four assists.
The win was VCU’s fourth victory in a row. It also marked 15th time in 16 games that the Rams beat