Monarchs Fall In CAA Semifinal To Va. Commonwealth, 84-67
March 7, 2004
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Commonwealth shot a blistering .653 from the floor (.731 in the first half) Sunday as the Rams beat Old Dominion 84-67 in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament semifinals.
The top-seeded Rams (22-7) won their seventh in a row and their ninth straight against the Monarchs to advance to Monday night's championship against N.C.-Wilmington or George Mason, who played in the late game.
Nick George led the Rams with 16 points, Troy Godwin and Dominic Jones each had 14 and Michael Doles had 12. Jones, George and Jesse Pellot-Rosa, who scored nine, each hit two 3-pointers. The Rams were 10-for-20 on 3s.
Alex Loughton led Old Dominion with 19 points. The Monarchs, once a contender for the regular season title, shot just 40 percent to VCU's 65 percent and lost for the fourth time in six games. ODU finished 17-12. Freshman forward Valdas Vasylius scored 11 points off the bench and freshman Drew Williams dished out six assists.
The Rams took control right away, making 15 of their first 19 shots and six of eight 3-pointers to open a 36-23 lead in the first 12 minutes.
George and Pellot-Rosa each had two 3-pointers and Walker and CAA player of the year Jones each had one in the extended opening burst.
The Rams led 45-33 at halftime, having connected on 73 percent of their shots (19 of 26). With Walker adding two quick 3-pointers and Jones one, VCU pushed its lead to 58-41 with 13:35 to play and coasted.
Old Dominion used a 7-3 run to get to 61-48, but Doles had five points and Pellot-Rosa a three-point play in an 8-2 run that clinched it.