FINAL: VCU 112, Massachusetts 54 (Richmond, Va. – Verizon Wireless Arena)
RECORDS: VCU (13-1), UMass (3-12)
VCU STARTERS: #22 Williams, #24 Parks, #31 Henry, #34 Robinson, #45 Thorpe
UMASS STARTERS: #1 Henry, #10 Harris, #24 Mital, #31 Hill, #41 Bomben
- VCU set three school records and matched its best start in program history with a 112-54 thrashing of Massachusetts in its Atlantic 10 opener Thursday night at the Verizon Wireless Arena. The Rams' 58-point victory was its second largest in the program's 40-year history.
- VCU, which set school records with 112 points, 62 first-half points and 14 3-pointers (most in A-10 this year; three shy of league record), also extended its program-record winning streak to 12 games (longest current streak in A-10) and tied its best start in school history at 13-1.
- The Rams, who led 62-19 at halftime and allowed just 10 points through the first 15 minutes, had a season-high six players score in double figures led by senior Robyn Parks' ninth consecutive 20-point outing with a game-high 22. Sophomore Adaeze Alaeze chipped in a career-best 21 points on a perfect 8-of-8 shooting off the bench to go along with four rebounds, five assists and four steals. Sophomore Jessica Pellechio (18), freshman Keira Robinson (13), senior Zakia Williams (12) and freshman Isis Thorpe (10) also finished with double-figure scoring.
- VCU, which improved to 6-0 at home for the first time since 2008-09, remains the only team in the A-10 with one loss.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
- VCU was on fire from the opening tip, hitting 7-of-8 and 3-of-3 from distance en route to a 17-3 lead at the 16:18 mark.
- The Rams, who scored 28 points off 19 first half turnovers, continued their surge with a 24-2 run to push their lead to 29-5 with just under 11 minutes to go in the opening stanza.
- VCU eventually scored 42 of 49 points during a nearly 12-minute stretch to push its lead to 50-10 with four minutes to go in the opening stanza.
- The Rams, who scored a school-record 62 points in the first half, led UMass 62-19 at intermission.
- Parks gave VCU its largest lead at the time, 70-29, at the charity strip with 14:31 left before Pellechio drained three straight 3-pointers to push its lead to 81-36 at the 12:26 mark.
- The Rams led by at least 42 points the remainder of the game.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE:
- Eleven of VCU's 13 wins this year have come by double digits.
- VCU's 62 points in the opening stanza were its most in a single half in school history. The previous high was 58, which occurred twice.
- The Rams surrendered their fewest points of the season with 54, while scoring 36 points off a season-high 30 turnovers.
- VCU dished out a season-best 25 assists, four shy of the program record, while 10 different Rams collected an assist.
- The Black and Gold hit 41-of-80 shots on the night, which were two made baskets away from the school record.
- VCU set the program's single-game 3-point record for the second straight season, hitting 14-of-32 from distance. Last year, the Rams knocked down 13 against UMKC.
- Redshirt-sophomore Melanie Royster logged a career-high five blocks, which is the most by a Ram since Chelsea Snyder's five on Feb. 9, 2012.
WHAT'S AHEAD: VCU hits the road for back-to-back A-10 games at Duquesne (Jan. 4) and La Salle (Jan. 8) before returning to the Verizon Wireless arena against Saint Joseph's on Jan. 12. The Rams-Hawks matchup will be televised nationally on CBS Sports Network.