The VCU women’s basketball team began the final month of the regular season with a 71-50 loss at conference rival Saint Joseph’s University on Saturday, Feb. 1.
A closely-contested game in the first half, the early story of the game was foul trouble. VCU forward Robyn Parks, guard Zakia Williams and guard Isis Thrope’s sporadic play throughout the first half slowed the Fury offense. An apparent elbow to the eye of starter Ryen Henry minutes before the end of the half had VCU play the remaining minutes with four of five starters on the bench. Still, head coach Marlene Stollings’ team held a 33-29 advantage going into halftime.
In the second half, Saint Joe’s came out on fire offensively and turned a four-point deficit into a double-digit lead for the Lady Hawks. Senior guard Erin Shields led the team with 27 points, while junior guard Natasha Clouds and sophomore forward Sarah Fairbanks both finished in double figures.
Saint Joe’s outscored VCU 41-18 in the second half, marking the lowest scoring total for the Lady Rams in a single half this season.
Stollings’ squad finished the game 3-18 (16.7 percent) from the three point line, 6-13 (46.2 percent) from the free throw line and 21-72 (29.2 percent) from the field.
The Lady Rams’ third road loss of the campaign dropped VCU’s record to 17-5 on the season and 5-4 in conference play.
With its win, SJU avenged a 73-69 defeat suffered against the Lady Rams less than a month ago. VCU still holds the all-time series advantage 5-3.
Up next for for VCU is a road game against the A-10 preseason favorite, Dayton University on Wednesday, Feb. 5.