VCU Wreaks Havoc on GW as the Colonials Fall in Road Matchup

Jeff Pawling
Men’s Basketball Writer

RICHMOND, Va. – The wheels fell off for GW on Saturday night as VCU wreaked havoc on the Colonials game plan in all facets and cruised to an 84-57 win in front of a capacity crowd at the Siegel Center.

Only two Colonials finished in double figures, led by freshman center Kevin Larsen, who put together a solid evening with 10 points and nine rebounds. Fellow freshman Patricio Garino also finished with 10 points of his own on 5-9 shooting in 32 minutes of action. However, those were the lone bright spots for a GW team that got out to a fast start, leading 8-2 a little over four minutes in, and then proceeded to be utterly dominated by the Rams the rest of the way.

Shaka Smart’s fast paced and aggressive full court defense, dubbed “Havoc” in VCU circles, created all sorts of problems for the young GW lineup, ultimately forcing the Colonials into committing 25 turnovers on the evening. Joe McDonald committed eight turnovers alone, as he struggled to get the ball past half court frequently. Garino and Kethan Savage did not fare much better, each turning the ball over four times.

Yet, for a while, the Colonials lurked around, keeping the deficit around 12 points. But the fast pace and aggressive nature of VCU’s defense wore down the Colonials late in the second half, causing them to be constantly beat to lose balls and rebounds. The result was a 21-6 run over the final 9:43 to put the game well out of reach for GW.

VCU was led by a stellar performance from Juvonte Reddic, who finished with 24 points on 11-13 shooting to go along with 10 rebounds. Yet, ironically, in his postgame interview, Shaka Smart commented that Reddic “could’ve played better,” showing just how much Smart expects from his highly talented Rams squad, who improved to 21-5 overall and 9-2 in the Atlantic 10, keeping them in sole possession of first place in the conference over the likes of Saint Louis, Butler, and La Salle.

As for GW (11-12, 5-5 Atlantic 10), the loss drops them one spot in the conference standings to ninth. However, combined with Dayton’s win over Xavier, the Colonials are now just a game and a half clear of the dreaded thirteenth place in the conference, currently occupied by St. Bonaventure. With Fordham as the only game left on the schedule where it can be legitimately stated that GW enters as the better team, it is shaping up to be a dog fight for the last tickets to Brooklyn. The Colonials have to be careful not to dwell too long on their loss to VCU, the type of loss that can leave many teams psychologically scarred for a while. Three of their final six games come against teams which will be battling for the final four seeds in the Atlantic 10 Tournament, and in order to stave off the possibility of being left out altogether, they will need to regain much of the confidence that was drained in Richmond on Saturday night.

The Colonials now prepare to host the aforementioned Fordham Rams (6-20, 2-9 Atlantic 10) on Wednesday night in the 500th game to be played in Charles E. Smith Center history. WRGW’s coverage starts at 6:45 with tipoff at 7 p.m. on gwradio.com.

About Jeff Pawling

Co-Assistant Sports Director, News & Social Media, WRGW District Radio

Posted on February 17, 2013, in Campus, GW Basketball, Men's Basketball and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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