YES! Bearcats get a quality road win against a quality opponent to add on their Tournament resume. Now, yes they are a 5-5 team, but VCU is a team that has rich history. They have been to the NCAA tournament numerous times and they reached the final 4 back in 2011. After the loses against Butler and Xavier, this was a much needed win to showcase our resume builder so we can go to the Tournament for the 6th straight season. It was also very nice to get the win at their hometown after they stomped us last season when Mick Cronin was pulled out because of his health condition. I like the sweet revenge 🙂
As always, Bearcats relied on their stingy defense to bring home the win. They held their top shooter, Melvin Johnson, to just 2 points the entire game. He averages 19 points a game…he also had more fouls than points. That’s bearcats defense for you. The game went back and forth the entire game. The bearcats offense were inconsistent at times but the fouls and free throws definitely helped us down the stretch. Thank goodness VCU couldn’t shoot theirs. It really frustrated me that the bearcats continued to turn the ball over. There was one point late in the game where they turned it over on 3 straight possessions. It is really inexcusable. I was really impressed with Gary Clark tonight. Even though he missed some easy jumpers and made some dumb fouls, he stepped up when Octavius and DeBerry fouled out. We all know he is a great rebounder, but he attacked the paint in the 2nd half and made critical shots. Again what a great win at VCU.
Next week, 5th ranked Iowa State is next. I don’t remember a time when a top 10 team visited Fifth Third Arena. Pretty much guaranteed that it’ll be packed, loud and a very fun game to watch. If they could pull a win against a top 10 team, it’ll definitely get rid of the bad taste loses against Xavier and Butler. Go Bearcats!