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Photos and Game Summary: Spider with the Last Second Win

Thirteen was the lucky number for the Spiders as they scored 13 in OT to edge out Vanderbilt by 1 point.

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Vanderbilt (2-1,0-0 SEC): 92
Richmond (2-0,0-0 Atlantic 10): 93

Box Score

Official UR Recap

“We’re resilient. We’re not going to quit.”

That’s what junior Jacob Gilyard said the Spiders showed Thursday night in a thrilling, come-from-behind win against Vanderbilt in OT.

Richmond overcame a seven-point deficit in the second half and a four-point hole in overtime to secure its first 2-0 start since 2013 as the Spiders improved to 6-3 vs SEC opponents under Chris Mooney.

With the score tied at 92 and Vanderbilt dribbling down the seconds in OT, it seemed like the best the Spiders could hope for was to force a second extra period. But Gilyard intercepted a Vanderbilt pass with four seconds remaining and flipped the ball ahead to Andre Gustavson, who streaking down the left side. Gustavson was fouled on his dunk attempt with 0.6 seconds remaining and sealed the 93-92 win for the Spiders when his first foul shot rattled around the rim and dropped through the net.

“The last play was amazing,” said Mooney. “For Jacob to have the presence of mind not to just launch a half-court shot but to find a streaking Andre and for him to make that foul shot is good for him and great for us and I’m really pleased with the victory and happy for our guys.”

Richmond started slowly, giving up the first seven points of the game but rebounded to build a 36-29 halftime lead behind 12 first-half points from junior Nathan Cayo and 11 from junior Blake Francis.

Vanderbilt sprinted to a lead early in the second half, however, as the Commodores made three-pointers on each of their first five possessions, turning a seven-point deficit into a four-point lead in the process. The lead swelled to seven before Richmond used a 12-0 run to take a 71-66 lead with four minutes left in regulation.

But the Commodores refused to go away, rallying to force overtime by holding the Spiders scoreless over the second half’s final 1:45 and using a pair of late three-pointers to knot the score at 80 at the end of regulation.

Richmond turned the ball over on its first two overtime possessions and trailed by four less than a minute into the extra period. Francis closed the gap to one on a three-pointer with 2:49 remaining, and Nick Sherod gave Richmond a one-point lead on a deep three-pointer with 1:14 to play, gathering the ball after Cayo tipped it out to the top fo the key for his sixth offensive rebound of the game.

After the teams traded pairs of free throws, Vanderbilt pulled ahead 92-90 on a three-pointer by Aaron Nesmith with 37 seconds to play, his seventh triple of the game. Gilyard answered 12 seconds later with a reverse layup to tie the score at 90, setting up Vanderbilt’s final possession and the ensuing heroics by Gilyard and Gustavson.

Gilyard led Richmond with 26 points and a game-high seven steals, one shy of the school record for steals in a game. The junior passed John Davis on the Spiders all-time steals list and is now in fourth place at 189.  Francis, Gilyard’s partner in the Spiders backcourt, added 24 points.

“They’re great players,” said Mooney of his starting backcourt. “They can do things at both ends of the floor and they can make big plays and big shots. Those guys are pretty special.”

Cayo scored 20 with a team-high eight rebounds as three Spiders reached the 20-point mark in a game for the first time since January 30, 2019 vs Saint Louis.

Richmond has now defeated a major-conference opponent in 14 of 15 seasons under Mooney and is 2-0 for the sixth time in his tenure (2006, 2009-10, 2012-13, 2019).

The Spiders will look to run their record to 3-0 Sunday against Cal State-Northridge (CSUN) from the Big West. Tip time is 4:00 PM and the game will be shown on MASN and ESPN Plus.

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