Hot Richmond Spiders win fourth in a row

ur-spiders1The Richmond Spiders made winning plays in the final minute yet again, holding off a late Saint Joseph’s rally to win 63-57 in the City of Brotherly Love.

UR (17-12, 10-6) is feeling plenty of love right now, winning its fourth game in a row and fifth in the last six tries. The Spiders have also won two road games in a row as they are tied for fifth place in the A-10 standings.

Saturday’s game followed a familiar script for Richmond fans. UR’s defense was outstanding in making a season-high 13 steals and holding the A-10’s leading scorer, DeAndre Bembry (18.6 ppg), to just six points on 3-of-14 shooting. Bembry committed five turnovers and went 0-for-4 from three. Richmond has now made 11 or more steals in three of the last four games, ranking second in the A-10.

In the Spider offensive half, senior Kendall Anthony posted his eighth 20-point performance of the season, pouring in 23 points on 8-of-16 shooting. He knocked down three treys and hit all four of his free throws, including two in the final minute that iced the win.

Junior Terry Allen came just one rebound shy of his fourth-straight double-double, finishing with 11 points and nine rebounds. Trey Davis tied his season high with 11 points on two threes, while T.J. Cline hit three treys in the second half.

Although his shot was off, ShawnDre’ Jones contributed in other ways with three big steals and four assists with no turnovers. Deion Taylor added a team-high four steals and four rebounds.

The Spiders forced 14 turnovers while only committing seven, pushing the season average back into single digits. Richmond scored 18 points off turnovers, while Saint Joseph’s only managed five. Six Spiders had multiple assists as Richmond assisted on 15 of 23 made baskets.

After trailing 23-18 late in the first half, Richmond went on a 13-0 run capped by a dunk and layup from Allen to lead 31-25 at halftime.

The Spiders opened up a 43-29 lead in the second half after the second three from Cline, but then the Hawks slowly began to chip away. UR answered mini-runs with several clutch baskets over the next 10 minutes, but the home team eventually drew even at 54 with 2:56 left.

The Spiders never let the Hawks sniff the lead as Cline hit another three out of a timeout, and then the defense got a big stop on the other end. A driving move by Davis down the baseline beat the shot clock and put UR up five with 1:36 left.

SJU converted a layup and forced a turnover, but after UR rebounded a missed free throw, the Hawks were forced to foul Anthony who made it a two-possession game with free throws with 13 seconds left. He hit a run-out layup as time expired to put an exclamation point on UR’s 63-57 win.

Richmond returns to the road this Wednesday for a big matchup at UMass, the team with whom UR is currently tied. That game will start at 7 p.m.and be available on a number of regional networks.

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