DEFENSE, EVANS’ HEROICS, LEAD VCU PAST TEMPLE 57-51

Legends Classic
Score: VCU 57, Temple 51
Location: Brooklyn, N.Y. (Barclays Center)
Records: VCU 4-0, Temple 4-1

The short story: Redshirt junior guard Marcus Evans turned in a series of clutch plays and scored 10 of his game-high 21 points in the final four minutes to lead VCU past Temple Monday night at the Legends Classic.

OPENING TIP

  • Evans, who made his first start in a VCU uniform, scored his 21 points in 24 minutes on 7-of-12 shooting from the field
  • Redshirt junior wing Issac Vann added 11 points for the Rams, while sophomore forward Marcus Santos-Silva provided six points, six rebounds and a steal
  • VCU was masterful defensively. The Rams limited the Owls to 32-percent (20-of-62) shooting, including 14 percent (4-of-28) from 3-point range
  • Nate Pierre-Louis scored 11 points and grabbed six steals to Temple

THE DIFFERENCE

  • Evans scooped in a go-ahead layup, which provided the Rams with a 51-50 margin, with 2:23 on the clock. A short time later he finished the job when he buried a step-back 3-pointer late in the shot clock with 32 seconds left to give VCU a 55-51 advantage. Temple missed its final three shots as the Rams held on for the win
  • VCU stormed out of the blocks to a 19-2 lead behind its pressure defense. Temple chipped away, but shot just 24 percent (9-of-37) in the first half as the Rams took a 28-21 lead into the locker room
  • The Owls would not go away, and took their first lead, at 39-38, on back-to-back 3-pointers by Alani Moore II and Shizz Alston Jr. midway through the second half
  • Led by Evans' heroics, VCU closed the game on a 13-3 run

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

  • VCU has held its first three opponents of the season to 57, 57, 61 and 51, respectively
  • The Rams improved to 4-0 for the first time since the 2014-15 season, when VCU finished 26-10 and captured its first Atlantic 10 Conference title
  • Monday's contest marked the first time Evans reached 20 points in a VCU uniform, but the 39th time in his career

NEXT UP
VCU advances to the Legends Classic Championship game on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. against St. John's. That game will be televised on ESPN2.