Heading into Wednesday night all five A-10 games on the slate looked like chalk. Dayton and VCU would stay unbeaten in conference play while Davidson cruised passed Fordham, right? Wrong. VCU took care of business with ease, but as for Dayton and Davidson, well, they struggled, mightily. Dayton and Davidson both suffered tough losses while the Rams downed George Washington by 30. Elsewhere in the A-10 Duquesne beat St. Louis 73-66 and Richmond stayed undefeated in conference play with a 78-61 win over St. Bonaventure.
UMass Upsets Dayton
Coming off a huge week, Dayton simply wanted to avoid a letdown on the road against UMass. Unfortunately for the Flyers, that did not happen. The Minutemen came out fighting and just did not give up. Despite shooting just 48% from the free throw line tonight, UMass found other ways to keep itself just in front Dayton. With 19 total turnovers, eight more than the Flyer’s season average, the Minutemen did a great job of throwing Dayton out of its offensive rhythm.
While both teams played exceptionally ugly basketball for the majority of this game, UMass played slightly less terrible than Dayton. The Flyers shot just 32% from the field whereas the Minutemen hit shots at a 41% clip. A win is a win and UMass has to be ecstatic about taking down Dayton 67-55 for its first conference victory of the season. As for the Flyers, Dayton needs to forget this one as quickly as possible and focus on rebounding against Duquesne. One bad loss is fine, but Archie Miller’s squad can not afford another slip up to a team like the Dukes on Saturday.
Davidson Falls to Fordham
Heading into this one legitimately thought there was a better chance Jack Gibbs single handedly dropped 54 points on Fordham than Davidson scoring that as a team. As it proves time and time again, though, college basketball is absolutely unpredictable. Fordham held Davidson to just 29% shooting from the field and 26% from behind the arc. Typically a team that can fill it up from three, the Wildcats simply could not find their stroke Wednesday night. Gibbs scored just 11 points as the entire Davidson team struggled.
With four players scoring in double figures, Fordham put together one of its better performances this year. The Rams knocked down nine triples on 43% shooting from behind the arc. Senior guard Javontae Hawkins led the way for Fordham with 17 points and nine rebounds. Despite having a rough year, the Rams showed great fight in their 60-54 upset win over Davidson Wednesday night.
VCU Crushes George Washington
Coming in as winners of seven straight, VCU looked to grab its eighth victory in a row against George Washington. From start to finish, the Rams played like they had something to prove in this one. Forcing a total of 17 Colonial turnovers, VCU’s havoc defense really effected GW. The Colonials shot just 2-16 from three and 37% from the field. With Tyler Cavanaugh on the bench for a large part of the game with foul trouble, George Washington just never managed to get anything going.
Dropping 20 points in the Ram’s 85-55 win, Justin Tillman played one of the best games of his VCU career. As a team the Rams shot 39% from three and 52% from the field. VCU also recorded an incredible 20 assists compared to George Washington’s measly four. With a road test at Davidson awaiting them, the Rams will look to stay unbeaten in conference play and extend their win streak to nine straight.