Dores Handed First Defeat

Vanderbilt falls at home to VCU

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Virginia Commonwealth’s suffocating and relentless defense engulfed Vanderbilt on Wednesday at Memorial Gymnasium to the tune of a 48-37 victory for the visitors.

The Commodores (2-1) held VCU to 32.7 percent shooting and forced 22 turnovers, but shot just 22.6 percent from the floor. Jordan Wright led Vandy with 15 points and seven rebounds.

“I thought we did some good things on the defensive end,” Vanderbilt head coach Jerry Stackhouse said. “Most nights we come in here and hold a team defensively to 32 percent shooting and 30 percent from 3 and they only shot (66.7) percent from the free throw line, you would feel like we would win that game.

“I look at our side of it and we’re 2-for-25 from 3 with looks we know we can make. It’s disappointing to see. I just don’t think we had our best night tonight.”

Vanderbilt returns home at 7 p.m. Saturday to host Winthrop (2-1).

Trailing 4-3 early Wednesday, VCU scored six in a row to go up 9-4 and held Vandy without a point for 4:16. A Wright layup followed by a Jamaine Mann three-point play, however, knotted the score at 9-all.

Terren Frank buried a 3 from the left corner with 7:56 on the clock putting the Commodores in front 12-11. Back-to-back 3s from Jayden Nunn and Vince Williams, however, put the Rams back ahead 17-12 with 4:40 left in the half.

Vanderbilt responded with a 10-4 run and took a 22-21 lead on a long Wright 3 only to see Nick Kern hit a short jumper in the paint making it a 23-22 game at the break.

The Rams opened the second half with a 7-2 run, punctuated by a Williams dunk, to force a Vanderbilt timeout after less than three minutes into the period. Hason Ward gave VCU a 34-26 lead with an emphatic, two-handed dunk at the 13:53 mark and moments later Kern drained a triple from the left wing making it 37-26.

Jalen DeLoach’s layup with 7:45 to go put the Rams ahead 44-28 and the Commodores could not find enough buckets to mount a comeback.

Williams paced the Rams (2-1) with 14 points.

“This is one that you don’t want to stew over too long,” Stackhouse said. “It’s just one of those nights. It’s an aberration. We don’t feel like we’ll shoot the ball this poorly again. If every shot we took tonight was a contested shot and we didn’t feel like we got the looks that we wanted then we got some bigger issues.

“Basketball is a game – you can play all the great defense you want to, but you got to score and we didn’t do that tonight.”

• Vanderbilt sophomore Tyrin Lawrence made a career-high three steals.

Scotty Pippen is now 106 points from reaching 1,000 for his career.

• Wright has now scored in double figures in eight straight regular-season games.

• Wright has started 18 straight games for Vanderbilt.

Trey Thomas has played 28 straight games for the Commodores.

• Vanderbilt is now 2-1 all-time against VCU and 27-13 against programs from the Atlantic-10 Conference.

• Vanderbilt has now made at least two 3s in 43 straight games.

• Attendance was announced as 5,768.

Vandy Downed by VCU by Vanderbilt Athletics on Exposure href=”” style=”text-transform:uppercase”>Exposure