Score: VCU 70, Rhode Island 44
Location: Kingston, R.I. (Ryan Center)
Records: VCU 19-7 (7-6 A-10), Rhode Island 7-19 (2-11)
- VCU posted its stingiest defensive performance since last season on the way to its 19th victory of the year. The performance marked the fewest points VCU has allowed since holding UMBC to 41 on Dec. 5, 2012.
- The Black and Gold held Rhode Island to 33 percent (16-of-49) shooting and turned the home team over 21 times.
- Robyn Parks overcame foul trouble to score 16 of her game-high 18 points in the second half. She was 5-of-10 from the field and 8-of-8 at the line.
- Sophomore Melanie Royster anchored the post for VCU Saturday and turned in a 5-point, 6-rebound, 4-block effort.
- Freshman Keira Robinson chipped in with 12 points, six rebounds and three assists for VCU.
- VCU allowed a season-low 17 points in the first half on the way to a 28-17 lead at intermission and never looked back.
- VCU outrebounded Rhode Island 43-36.
HOW IT HAPPENENED
- Already up 23-15 at the 5:44 mark of the first half, VCU proceeded to hold Rhode Island without a field goal for the next 7:22 of game time. The Black and Gold used the Rhode Island drought to embark on an 11-2 run that pushed the VCU lead to 34-17 early in the second half.
- VCU trailed just once all night, after Rhode Island's Kerry Wallack hit a 3-pointer to open the game. A short time later, VCU's Isis Thorpe buried a 3-pointer of her own to give the Black and Gold a 5-3 advantage. VCU would not surrender the lead the remainder of the evening.
- The Atlantic 10's leading scorer (22.3 ppg), Parks picked up her second foul with 13:50 left in the first half and retreated to the bench for the rest of the period with two points. VCU led 12-9 at that point, but 3-pointers by Robinson and Monnazjay Finney-Smith bookended an 11-4 burst that put VCU in front by 10.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Robinson handed out three assists to move into fifth place on VCU's single-season list with 163.
- Parks has scored at least 11 points in 55 straight games.
- VCU is on the cusp of its sixth 20-win season in program history. The Rams last won 20 during the 2009-10 season.
- VCU returns home to the Verizon Wireless Arena for an A-10 contest with St. Bonaventure on Wednesday, Feb. 19 at 7 p.m.