November 21, 2013
10TH-RANKED RAMS FALL TO FLORIDA STATE IN PUERTO RICO OPENER, 85-67
- Score: FSU 85, #10 VCU 67
- Records: VCU (3-1), FSU (4-0)
- Location: Coliseo Roberto Clemente (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
- The Basics: The VCU men's basketball team forced 25 turnovers, but it wasn't enough as Florida State shot 53.7% from the field en route to a 85-67 upset of the 10th-ranked Rams. Junior Treveon Graham led the Rams offensively with 14 points, while senior Rob Brandenberg chipped in 10 points.
How It Happened
- After FSU opened the scoring early, the Rams reeled off eight straight points with a layup by Graham capping the run and staking VCU to an 8-2 advantage with 17:04 to play in the first half.
- The Seminoles responded with a 9-0 run of their own to regain the lead at 11-8. It was a lead they would never relinquish.
- It remained a one possession game for much of the first half until FSU scored eight straight points to take their largest lead of the game at that point, 27-18, with 7:44 left in the stanza.
- Ian Miller continued his aggressiveness, getting to the line six times in the first half, to help the Seminoles push their lead to as high as 17, 46-29, with just over a minute to play before the break.
- A 3-pointer by Melvin Johnson and back-to-back forced turnovers quickly got the Rams within 10 at 46-36 with 37 seconds remaining in the half, but a dunk off an out-of-bounds play sent FSU into the locker rooms with a 48-36 lead.
- FSU set the tone for the second half right out of the break, scoring the first 11 points of the second half, capped off by a 3-pointer by Devon Bookert.
- The Seminoles would continue to attack, getting to the free-throw line 18 times in the second half and extending their lead to as many as 30 with just under five minutes remaining.
- Strong interior play by Mo Alie-Cox and an energy spurt from freshmen JeQuan Lewis, Doug Brooks and Jairus Lyles helped the Rams closed the game on a 12-0 run to close the game off at 85-67.
- "Congratulations to Florida State, I thought they played a great game. There players were very aggressive and overall they were obviously a much better team, tonight. I thought for us this was definitely a wakeup call or realization that we can't just take the floor and be who we want to be, we've got to make it happen. We've got to get back to being more aggressive, but also playing with better discipline. We turned them over 25 times, which is great, but we did a very poor job of defending on all the other possessions. That's something that we're going to work hard to address and get better at." – Head Coach Shaka Smart
- "It's a classic case of allowing our offense to affect our defense. We had some really good looks early in the game that just didn't go in – wide open threes, some shots around the basket. There's going to be nights like that, but the good teams keep playing, the good teams stick to the process that brings them success. Part of that process is all the things that go into getting them stops on the defensive end. We did not do that tonight." – Head Coach Shaka Smart
- "At the beginning of the game things weren't going our way offensively and we weren't playing with that cohesiveness. We weren't connected out there, we weren't playing as a unit. Some guys started focusing on themselves." – Senior Rob Brandenberg
- "We've just got to get ready for tomorrow for the next game. That was probably one of the toughest of my college career, but like coach said we've just got to move on and learn from it. The best teams respond. It isn't going to be perfect, but we've just got to come back tomorrow and fight." – Senior Rob Brandenberg
- The Rams return to the court in Puerto Rico on Friday evening to take on Long Beach State. Game time on ESPNU is set for 8:30 p.m. EST.