VCU came to St. Bonaventure with a chance to get a share of first place and they played like it… for one half.
The Rams were outscored 45-14 in the second half in the 70-54 loss.
A lot of VCU’s “havoc” defense spawns conversations about pace and turnovers but sometimes there isn’t enough credit given to it’s impact on the boards.
Early on the Bonnies did a good job at controlling pace. Both teams struggled from the floor because of solid half court defense but as the pace quickened, there was one thing apparent, the Bonnies were going to have problems keeping VCU off the boards.
Coming into the game, it was the Bonnies who were first in the conference in offensive rebounding with the Rams being ninth. Levi Stockard III set the tone grabbing seven rebounds (four offensive) in the first half. The Rams would out-rebound the Bonnies 27-14. Fourteen of the 27 rebounds were offensive rebounds. The extra chances led to 14 first half second chance points.
The Rams would lead 40-25 at the half.
That’s when everything changed. The ball stopped moving on offense so there weren’t any lanes for VCU’s offensive rebounders to probe. It had turned into a bad pick up game where everyone looked tired. One guy shoots while four guys stand outside the three point line.
The second half numbers showed it. Not only did the Bonnies outscore VCU 45-14 in the second half they closed the game on a 16-1 run (ending on an 11-0 run).
The Rams had four offensive rebounds and zero second chance points in the second half.