Rams Notch Eighth Consecutive Victory, Blow by St. Joe's 89-74

The Basics

  • Score: #20 VCU 89, Saint Joseph's 74
  • Records: #20 VCU (13-3, 3-0 A10), St. Joe's (6-7, 0-3 A10)
  • Location: Verizon Wireless Arena at the Stuart C. Siegel Center inside the HDL, Inc. Athletic Village – Richmond, Va.
  • Short Story: VCU extended its winning streak to eight games on Saturday afternoon with an 89-74 victory over the visiting Hawks from Saint Joseph's. Junior Melvin Johnson put on a show from behind the arc, making six of his seven attempts from long range en route to his third 20-point performance of the season.
  • Video: Highlights l Coach Smart Presser l Coach Martelli Presser
  • Storify: The win through the eyes of #RamNation

How It Happened

  • The three ball has been a big part of VCU's game plan all season long, and it was no different today. The Rams jumped out to a quick 9-0 lead thanks to threes from senior Treveon Graham and one from sophomore Jordan Burgess.
  • A big part of that 3-point threat came from Johnson, who rattled off eight straight points for the Rams at one point midway through the first half that served as a preview for what was to come. In the first half, both he and Graham would make three of their four three-point attempts.
  • Shortly after Johnson's scoring outburst, St. Joe's broke off a 7-0 run to pull within three, 20-17. The Hawks would actually cut their deficit to one with 8:12 left in the half, but the Rams were having none of that and ended the first half outscoring St. Joe's 24-9. After 20 minutes VCU led 46-30.
  • VCU came out firing to start the second half as well, extending its lead to 24 in the process, the highlight play being a volleyball-esque spike/block from sophomore Mo Alie-Cox that led to another trey from Johnson that sent the crowd into a frenzy.
  • After having its lead reach a game-high 27, VCU allowed St. Joe's to crawl back into the game. Starting at the 9:58 mark, the Hawks whittled the Ram lead from 27 all the way down to 14 in just under five minutes of game time.
  • Despite that spirited comeback, the Hawks were not able to overcome their 20 turnovers nor VCU's 52 percent mark from behind the arc. When the horn sounded the Rams found themselves on the right side of a 89-74 decision, good for their eighth consecutive victory.

Beyond the Box Score

  • Weber took sole possession of fourth place on the NCAA career steals list, and is now just 28 steals away from becoming the all-time leader. Today was also the 25th five-steal game of his career.
  • Today marked head coach Shaka Smart's 150th career victory. He reached that plateau in just 199 games, tied for the seventh-fewest in NCAA history.

Up Next

  • The Rams will kick off a three-game road trip this Tuesday with a visit to Rhode Island to face the Rams, followed by a Saturday afternoon matchup against Duquesne. Both games will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network.