The Collegian
Monday, April 15, 2024

Men's basketball continues best start in 22 years

The University of Richmond men's basketball team continued to improve on its best start to a season in recent history with a win at Duquesne University 80-68 on Jan. 6.

The win improved the Spiders to 12-4 -- their best start in 22 years -- and 1-0 in Atlantic-10 Conference play.

Richmond is 5-1 after losing back-to-back games to Virginia Commonwealth University and University of South Carolina. The only loss during that stretch was a 74-68 overtime loss at Wake Forest University on Dec. 31.

The Spiders started off this hot streak with a 56-53 upset over then-No. 13 University of Florida on Dec. 19. The Gators have since fallen out of the top-25.

Richmond followed up that win with an easy 89-63 victory at home against the University of North Carolina at Greensboro on Dec. 22. Gonzalvez scored a season-high 25 points to lead three other Spiders in double figures.

The Spiders then had the next six days off before returning back to the Robins Center to play the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, a team picked to finish towards the bottom of the Colonial Athletic Association. It was not the easy game many expected and Richmond escaped with a 66-64 win. Richmond trailed by seven with 2:53 left during the game before it used a full-court press to turn the Seahawks over on four straight possessions and take a 60-59 lead. Junior Kevin Anderson led the way by scoring all of his 24 points during the second half.

Richmond then started a four-game road trip with an overtime loss at Wake Forest. The Spiders committed 29 personal fouls which led to 40 free-throws attempted and 29 made for the Demon Deacons. Wake Forest grabbed 48 rebounds --including 16 offensive -- compared with only 32 for the Spiders. That was too much for Richmond to overcome, despite a 31-point performance from Anderson.

The Spiders turned out another win at Bucknell University, 59-50, on Jan. 2. Richmond was in control for most of the game and led by as many as 15 during the second half. The Bisons cut the lead to three with 1:29 left during the game before the Spiders responded with an 8-2 run to close out its last non-A-10 game.

Richmond got off to a fast start in A-10 play with a 80-68 win at Duquesne. Senior David Gonzalvez scored a game-high 19 points to move into 10th place on the all-time scoring list with 1,429 points. Richmond had a slim three-point half-time lead but outscored the Dukes 47-32 during the second half behind the strength of 58 percent three-point shooting.

Junior Dan Geriot returned to the starting lineup before the Bucknell game. Sophomore Josh Duinker had started the previous three games at center for the struggling Geriot. Duinker was only on the floor for a total of 24 minutes during those three games compared with 86 minutes -- including 37 minutes against Wake Forest -- that Geriot played.

Anderson has played a total of 194 minutes with just 11 minutes of rest during the past six games.

During the Wilmington game, senior Ryan Butler left the game with a slight concussion and Geriot injured his shoulder. Both were able to recover in time for the next game against Wake Forest.

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The Spiders finish their road trip at 5 p.m. on Jan. 9 against Saint Louis University. The Spiders will then play three in a row at home, starting with the University of Massachusetts at 7 p.m. on Jan. 13.

Andrew Prezioso reported from Annandale, N.J.

Contact staff writer Andrew Prezioso at andrew.prezioso@richmond.edu

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