St. John’s edges VCU in Legends Classic title game

vcu men's basketballRedshirt junior wing Issac Vann erupted for a career-high 30 points for VCU, but Tournament MVP Shamorie Ponds hit a runner with 4.8 seconds remaining in overtime to give St. John’s a hard-fought victory Tuesday in the Legends Classic Championship.

In a game that featured 16 ties and 24 lead changes, Vann gave the Rams an 86-85 advantage when he drove the lane to draw a foul and knocked down a pair from the charity stripe with 10.9 seconds on the clock.

But Ponds, who scored nine of the Red Storm’s 14 points in overtime drove left of the lane and banked home a running lefty floater from eight feet. VCU’s 3-point attempt as time expired was no good.

Ponds scored 25 of his game-high 35 points in the second half and overtime and also supplied seven assists and seven steals for the Red Storm. He was 12-of-15 at the free throw line.

In addition to his career-high 30 points, which including 10-of-10 shooting from the free throw line and 4-of-7 from 3-point range, Vann booked his third career double-double with 11 rebounds, as well as five assists.

In all, four Rams scored in double figures, including junior guard De’Riante Jenkins, who buried four 3-pointers and finished with 14 points.

Junior guards Malik Crowfield and Marcus Evans added 13 and 12 points, respectively, for the Black and Gold, while sophomore forward Marcus Santos-Silva contributed six points, 12 rebounds and a pair of blocked shots.

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Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25.

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