Score: VCU 81, Richmond 74
Location: Richmond, Va. (E.J. Wade Arena at the Stuart C. Siegel Center)
Records: VCU 17-5 (7-2 A-10), Richmond 13-9 (7-3)
Attendance: 7,637 (95th consecutive sellout)

The short story: Junior forward Justin Tillman scored 18 points and hauled in a game high nine rebounds to lead the Rams in a vital win over cross-town rival Richmond in front of a sold out E.J. Wade Arena Wednesday night. Four Rams scored in double-digits as VCU retook a share of first place in the Atlantic 10 Conference with the victory.
  • With the win, the Rams move into a first-place tie in the A-10 with Dayton at 7-2. VCU topped Dayton 73-68 on Saturday. Wednesday's game also completes a three-game stretch in which VCU faced a team holding at least a share of first in the A-10. The Rams won all three.  
  • Redshirt Freshman Samir Doughty contributed 16 points and six assists for the Rams on 5-of-9 shooting from the floor.
  • Senior guard JeQuan Lewis added 13 points for the Rams while dishing out five assists.
  • Doug Brooks was active on the defensive and led all players with four steals.
  • Senior Mo Alie-Cox scored 13 points and knocked down 5-for-6 from the floor. He collected four rebounds and came up with two steals.
  • ShawnDre' Jones poured in a game-high 30 points to pace the Spiders, while teammate T.J. Cline added 15 points, eight assists and seven rebounds.
  • The back-and-forth affair featured 10 ties and 10 lead changes.
  • VCU turned the ball over just seven times all night, including just three in the second half. As a result, the Rams rolled up a 17-2 advantage in points off turnovers. Richmond coughed the ball up 13 times.
  • Alie-Cox snapped a 54-54 tie with a two-handed slam, then picked off a Richmond interior pass to set up a 3-pointer by Lewis, to kick off a decisive 11-2 run over a two-minute span down the stretch. When a pair of Tillman free throws capped the burst, VCU held a 65-56 lead with 4:32 left. Richmond never pulled closer than six the rest of the way as VCU knocked down 12-of-15 free throws in the final four minutes.
  • Although the game remained close for much of the second half, Richmond took its final lead of the night on a Jones jumper with 10:43 remaining. VCU quickly sprinted off to a 7-0 run, punctuated by a Lewis 3-pointer from the left wing, to grab a 54-47 lead. The Spiders answered almost immediately with seven straight and tied the game at 54-all with 7:54 left on a dunk by De'Monte Buckingham.
  • VCU has won three straight games overall and four in a row in its series with Richmond. The Rams are 49-28 all-time against their crosstown rivals.
  • The Black and Gold are now 10-1 this season when they turn the ball over 12 or fewer times.
  • The Rams are now 3-0 against Richmond under Will Wade.
  • VCU improved to 11-1 at home this season.
  • The Rams scored 44 points in the paint Wednesday, their 12th game this year with 40 or more points in the paint.
VCU will be back in action on Feb. 4 at 4 p.m. when they travel to take on St. Bonaventure at the Reilly Center in Olean, New York.
December 27, 2016 RAMS BLAST HOWARD 85-51