Richmond defense shuts down Howard in 54-41 win

ur-spiders1The Richmond defense shut down Howard in the second half en route to a 54-41 win in the first game of the Gotham Classic at the Robins Center.

Richmond (4-4) held Howard (5-6) to 29.5 percent shooting for the game and a paltry 4-of-23 (17.4 percent) from the field in the second half.

The Spiders forced a season-best 21 turnovers, turning those into 21 points. The Spiders also held a 9-1 edge in second-chance points with 10 offensive rebounds. Overall, rebounds were nearly even with Howard holding a slim 33-32 advantage.

Eight players reached the scoring column for the Spiders, while only three players hit field goals for Howard.

ShawnDre’ Jones led the way with 11 points on 3-of-6 shooting from long range. It was Jones’ third double-figure scoring game of the year. He also had two assists and two steals.

Terry Allen scored nine points, going a perfect 7-of-7 from the line. Deion Taylor, Kendall Anthony and Alonzo Nelson-Ododa all scored eight points.

Taylor earned his second start of the season and put together his best performance of the season. His energy and hustle earned him a season-high seven rebounds and two steals.

“I thought we played really well defensively,” head coach Chris Mooney said. “We held them to a great defensive field goal percentage and we turned them over a lot. We were able to capitalize on some of those turnovers. I thought we were much more aggressive than we’ve been, but a little bit choppy at times.”

Howard’s James Daniell III scored a game-high 18 points, while James Carlton added 12 points and six rebounds. James Miller scored 10 points to round out Howard’s only three scorers from the field.

The Spiders built a 17-point lead in the first half by going on a 21-2 run over 10 minutes, leading 24-7 with 8:58 left. But Howard was able to slow down the Spider onslaught with its own defensive stand and improved shooting, cutting the lead to 28-23 at halftime.

After a Daniel III three cut Richmond’s lead to 33-30 with 16:39 left, Richmond shut down Howard entirely on the defensive end. Howard only made one more field goal until the final 10 seconds of the game.

Jones hit a big corner three-pointer with 8:10 left and Richmond’s aggressiveness led to 17 second-half free throw attempts which kept the Spiders comfortably in the lead down the stretch.

Richmond continues in the Gotham Classic by hosting South Alabama on Thursday night at 7 p.m.

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