VCU CRUISES TO 82-55 WIN AT NORTHEASTERN IN PROGRAM’S 1,000TH GAME

BOSTON, Mass. – Junior forward Courtney Hurt paced three Virginia Commonwealth University players in double figures with game-highs of 21 points and 10 rebounds and the Rams cruised to a 82-55 victory against Northeastern on Sunday afternoon at the Cabot Center.  The game marked the 1,000th contest in VCU's 36-year history.

The Rams, who picked up their ninth win in 12 outings, improve to 13-8 overall with an 8-3 mark in Colonial Athletic Association play.  Northeastern slips to 8-14, 3-8.

Hurt posted her NCAA-leading 17th double-double of the season, while junior Andrea Barbour finished with 17 points, five rebounds and five assists for VCU.  Sophomore Sonia Johnson added 16 points and five boards, and junior Jennifer Lane chipped in five points with a career-high 11 assists.

Northeastern pulled within 9-8 on a 3-pointer by Dani Iervolino at the 15:32 mark in the opening stanza but VCU scored nine of the next 10 points and freshman Robyn Parks gave the Rams an 18-9 advantage with a stick-back less than four minutes later.

A layup by Barbour gave VCU a 10-point advantage with 8:07 left in the half but the Huskies wouldn't back down and pulled within 28-23 on a basket by Mia Mayberry with 4:30 showing.

On the ensuing possession, Lane, who dished out seven first-half assists, knocked down a triple from the right corner and the Rams went back on top by eight.  Then, back-to-back baskets by Barbour and a fast break layup from Johnson capped off a 10-3 VCU run, which gave the Black & Gold its largest lead of the period, 38-26, with 2:18 to go. 

Hurt scored the final four points of the half for VCU, which shot 53 percent including 5 of 9 from long range in the opening stanza, and the Rams took an 11-point lead into the locker room.

VCU came out of the break on fire, scoring 15-straight points to start the second half and pushed its lead to 57-31 on a 3-pointer from senior Jessica Taylor less than four minutes in.  Five different Rams scored during the surge. 

The Black & Gold, which held at least a 21-point advantage the rest of the way, extended its lead to 80-46 on a layup by Johnson with 2:58 remaining.

Christine Huber led Northeastern with 12 points, while Kashaia Cannon added 10.

VCU held a lopsided 47-24 advantage on the boards, including a 40-24 edge in the paint and 21-8 margin in second-chance points.

The Rams return to the Verizon Wireless Arena for pivotal three-game home stand beginning with James Madison on Thursday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m.  VCU then welcomes Hofstra (Feb. 13) and Old Dominion (Feb. 17).

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