news vcu gets out to big early lead coasts from there to 90 63 win over northern illinois
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VCU gets out to big early lead, coasts from there to 90-63 win over Northern Illinois

VCU Basketball
Logo: VCU Athletics

VCU got 22 points from Jamir Watkins in a convincing 90-63 win over visiting Northern Illinois on Saturday at the Siegel Center.

The Rams (8-4, KenPom: 118) led 9-2 a minute in, had the margin at 24-6 at the 14:24 mark and were never threatened from there.

Watkins was 8-of-12 from the field and a perfect 4-of-4 from the free throw line on the way to his new career-high, topping his previous high of 15 against Western Carolina in 2020.

Jalen DeLoach scored 16 points, tying the career-high he set earlier this month at Temple. He also brought down nine rebounds, just one shy of a double-double.

David Shriver got his first start of the season in place of Brandon Johns Jr., who was a late scratch due to a back injury. Shriver made the most of his turn in the starting five, notching a season-high 14 points and shooting 4-of-7 from the field, including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc.

Ace Baldwin Jr. was the fourth and final Ram in double figures with 10 points. Baldwin’s biggest contribution came in distributing the ball to his teammates with eight assists.

Keshawn Williams and Zarique Nutter were bright spots for Northern Illinois, scoring 16 and 11 points, respectively, for the visiting Huskies (3-8, KenPom: 312).

The Rams will wrap up non-conference play on Wednesday when they play host to the Navy Midshipmen.

The game will tip-off at 7 p.m., and it will be televised on MASN and streamed on ESPN+.

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

In addition to being the editor of Augusta Free Press, I've written seven books, including Poverty of Imagination and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, both published in 2019, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For my commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to my YouTube page, youtube.com/chrisgrahamAFP. Want to reach me? Try [email protected].

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