RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Marcus Evans scored 25 points and No. 20 VCU closed the first half on a big run in a 78-62 victory against Alabama State on Monday night.
Evans had 18 points in the first half, including 10 during the 26-7 burst that gave VCU (6-0) a 46-28 lead. The Rams led by 19 after halftime, and when the Hornets closed within 12 with 9 minutes left, the Rams turned up their defense and scored the next seven points.
Tobi Ewuosho scored 17 points and Kevion Stewart 14 for Alabama State (0-5), which has played three AP Top 25 teams in its first five games.
The Rams trailed 21-20 before Mike’L Simms’ 3-pointer sparked the big run over the final 8:18 of the half. Evans scored 10 and Simms eight during the burst.
Alabama State: The Hornets have the unenviable task of not only playing their first 15 games away from home, including four neutral site games, but they’ve already faced No. 8 Gonzaga, No. 17 Tennessee and VCU, and will also see No. 11 Oregon and Kansas State. They came into the game at the Siegel Center having lost their first four by an average of 24.2 points.
VCU: The Rams won their only game so far against a Power Five school, beating then-ranked LSU 84-82, but their schedule takes a significant upswing after Thanksgiving as they play Purdue on Friday and then either Florida State or No. 17 Tennessee, with both games coming in the Emerald Coast Classic in Florida.
The Hornets will be on the road for the sixth consecutive game, facing Chattanooga in the Emerald Coast Classic in Niceville, Florida.
The Rams will be on the road for the first time this season, facing Purdue in the Emerald Coast Classic in Niceville, Florida.