Dayton came into its game with Richmond with some serious confidence after a hard fought victory over VCU last week. After 8 minutes of game time today, Richmond had 4 points. Dayton came to play and rumblings and grumblings about Kendall Pollard and his balky knee, while legitimate, had no bearing on the final outcome of a game that Dayton controlled from start to finish. The Flyers jumped out to a big lead early and never looked back in their 69-54 victory.
Dayton was helped by Richmond’s lack of ability to make close shots but let’s not get this twisted; Dayton looked like a #1 seed today. Dayton had a balanced attack on offense and played its usual swarming defense to beat down the Spiders and end their disappointing season. This game was basically decided after 8 minutes of play. Unlike a week ago, Dayton showed Richmond and the rest of the A10 why it is a team that needs to be reckoned with in March.
The second game of the day saw Saint Joe’s come back from a double digit deficit to end George Washington’s NCAA Tournament hopes. DeAndre Bembry and company made too many plays down the stretch for GW to handle and the result was a 86-80 victory for Saint Joe’s. Bembry was spectacular in the final 8 minutes of the game facilitating the offense and setting teammates up for great looks at the basket. He finished the game with 21 points and 6 rebounds but his impact on the game was far more impressive than a boxscore byline.
George Washington took a 14-point lead into half time but Saint Joe’s outscored the Colonials 51-31 in the second half. An aggressive GW team looked slow and timid in the second half against a Saint Joe’s team that was determined to get a hard fought victory on a neutral court. Saint Joseph’s and Dayton will get after it tomorrow afternoon. If you don’t watch the game, I feel bad for you.