University of Richmond (12-4,2-1 Atlantic 10): 58
Saint Louis (14-3,3-1 Atlantic 10): 74
The University of Richmond men’s basketball team was on the wrong end of a 21-2 second-half run that spurred Saint Louis to a 74-58 win over the Spiders at the Robins Center Saturday. The loss snapped Richmond’s eight-game home win streak.
The Spiders (12-4, 2-1 in the Atlantic 10) struggled shooting in the loss, connecting on just 39.7 percent (23-of-58) from the field and only 19.0 percent (4-of-21) from three-point range. Richmond was also out-scored 48-26 in the paint as the Billikens finished the game shooting 50.9 percent (28-of-55) from the field, with many of their shots coming at or near the basket. Saint Louis (14-3, 3-1) forced the Spiders into 15 turnovers while getting a game-high 26 points from Jordan Goodwin, who shot 10-19 from the field and played all 40 minutes.
Junior guard Nick Sherod (Richmond, Va.) became the fourth active Spider to reach the 1,000-career point mark as he finished with a team-high 17 points. Sherod joined the club with a three-pointer in the second half and now has 1,003 career points. Richmond is the only team in NCAA Division I this year that has four 1,000 career point scorers on the roster.
Junior guard Jacob Gilyard (Kansas City, Mo.) became the program’s all-time leader in career steals early in the second half, surpassing the previous record held by Greg Beckwith (227). Gilyard finished the game with three steals, raising his career mark to 230. He entered the game ranked first in NCAA Division I this season averaging 3.33 steals per game.
The first half saw the two teams unable to separate from each other as neither team was able to build more than a five-point advantage. Saint Louis held a 16-12 lead at the 11:49 mark before the Spiders scored four-straight from junior forward Grant Golden (Winchester, Va.), including a three-point play in the paint. The Billikens retook the lead at 25-20 before the Spiders posted a 11-4 run, taking a 31-29 lead in the last minute of the half. Freshman Tyler Burton (Uxbridge, Mass.) had the energy-providing play during the run, converting a three-point play down low to tie the game at 29-29. The teams went into the locker room deadlocked at 31-31.
Richmond took a 43-37 lead early in the second half, courtesy of a 10-2 run. Sherod scored five-straight from the post during the stretch, while junior guard Blake Francis (Herndon, Va.) nailed a three-pointer in transition to extend the lead. Saint Louis came right back and scored the game’s next 10 points on its way to a 21-2 run that gave the Billikens a 58-45 lead with 6:57 remaining. Richmond began to foul to force the Billikens, who entered the game shooting 57 percent from the free-throw line, to the charity stripe. But Saint Louis shot 14-18 from the foul line in the second half to keep Richmond from threatening down the stretch.
The Spiders hit the road for a pair of games next week, beginning Tuesday night when they visit Davidson. Game time is set for 7 p.m. and will be nationally televised on ESPNU.
“Field of Dreams'” Dwier Brown coming to the Diamond for Opening Night; Andruw Jones rescheduled
The actor known as John Kinsella in the classic baseball film will help ring in new Flying Squirrels season; Jones is headed to The Diamond on April 21st.
Actor Dwier Brown, known for his role in the movie “Field of Dreams,” will be a special guest for the Richmond Flying Squirrels’ Opening Night on April 16, the team announced on Friday. Former MLB star Andruw Jones, who was originally announced as an Opening Night guest, has rescheduled his appearance to Tuesday, April 21.
Opening Night with the Flying Squirrels, presented by Virginia Birth Father Registry and Chick-fil-A, will include dueling fireworks to ring in the new season. First pitch between the Flying Squirrels and Bowie Baysox is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. and the ballpark gates open at 5 p.m.
Brown is well-known for his role in the acclaimed baseball film, “Field of Dreams,” in which he portrayed John Kinsella, the father of the film’s main character, Ray Kinsella. The Ohio native also held movie roles in “The Guardian,” “The Cutting Edge” and “Dennis the Menace Strikes Again!” He has also made appearances in television shows, including “ER,” “Firefly” and “House.”
“We look forward to an action-packed first homestand of the 2020 season,” Flying Squirrels VP & COO Todd “Parney” Parnell said. “Having such an iconic character with us on Opening Night will generate great momentum as we strive for our 11th consecutive Opening Night sellout.”
VIP Meet & Greet packages will be available for $40 each beginning Mon., Feb. 24 at 8:30 a.m. and include access to an exclusive VIP meet & greet with Brown, an all-you-can-eat buffet in the SEGRA Picnic Zone and a Field Level ticket for the Flying Squirrels’ home opener. Packages can be purchased by phone at 804-359-FUNN (3866) or in-person at the Flying Squirrels’ offices at The Diamond. More information is available here.
The Flying Squirrels’ first 10 home openers have all sold out, including franchise-record crowds of 9,845 fans in each of the last two years. Since the franchise’s first season in 2010, the Flying Squirrels have welcomed a special guest to help open the home schedule at The Diamond. Brown joins the list of sports stars and dignitaries to celebrate the start of the new baseball season in Richmond. Previous guests include:
- 2019 – Ryan Klesko
- 2018 – Fred McGriff & Gov. Ralph Northam (caught by Mayor Levar Stoney)
- 2017 – David Justice (caught by Mayor Levar Stoney)
- 2016 – Jerome Bettis
- 2015 – Will Wade (caught by Gov. Terry McAuliffe)
- 2014 – Michael Robinson
- 2013 – Javy Lopez & Ryan Kerrigan
- 2012 – Dale Murphy
- 2011 – James Farrior, Brandon Rozzell & Chris Mooney
- 2010 – Gov. Bob McDonnell
VIP Meet & Greet Packages for the appearance by five-time NL All-Star Andruw Jones will also go on sale on Mon., Feb. 24 at 8:30 a.m. Packages cost $50 each an include access to an exclusive VIP meet & greet with Jones, an exclusive Andruw Jones commemorative card, up to two autographs per attendee, an all-you-can-eat buffet in the SEGRA Picnic Zone and a Field Level ticket for the April 21 game. More information is available here.
“Having to move Andruw to Tuesday night gives us an amazing opportunity to celebrate not just Opening Night, but again when Andruw comes on April 21,” Parney said. “The entire first homestand promotional calendar gives us a great opportunity to have our best start in team history.”
Packages can be purchased by phone at 804-359-FUNN (3866) or in person at the Flying Squirrels’ offices at The Diamond.
Fans can also purchase combined VIP Meet & Greet Packages for both Opening Night with Dwier Brown and April 21 with Andruw Jones for $75.Information on group packages for the Flying Squirrels’ home opener on April 16 are available here or by contacting the front office at 804-359-FUNN (3866).
Local artist Doug Orleski, better known as RVA Coffee Stain, selected as Monument 10K “Dash for the Cash” participant
Though he acknowledges that he still has plenty of work left to do to prepare before race day, Orleski already has plans for the $2,500 if he does cross the finish line first: he’ll donate the winnings to the VCU Massey Cancer Center.
Doug Orleski, the Richmond-based artist known as ‘RVA Coffee Stain,’ has been selected for an opportunity to win $2,500 on Saturday, March 28, as the Dash for the Cash participant at the 2020 Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10k presented by Kroger. In the Dash for the Cash, one participant is selected to get a head start on the course and race against the rest of the field in hopes of being the first to cross the finish line. If the contestant can outrun the fastest elite runner, the Dash for the Cash prize is theirs for the taking.
Orleski’s head start will be based on his estimated predicted time on his race entry form, previous running experiences, and estimated times of elite runners in the field. His goal is to attempt to cross the finish line before any of the other athletes running in the full 10k (6.2 miles). If he does outpace the rest of the field to the finish line, he will win the $2,500 cash prize.
The 2020 Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10k will be Orleski’s first-ever race after taking up running several years ago as part of a commitment to improving his health through active living. He began exercising and running on a regular basis and in the process lost 60 pounds on his journey to a healthier, more active lifestyle.
Through his cartoon and sketch work as RVA Coffee Stain, Orleski says he’s able to celebrate Richmond through art, and his work helped him become part of the community after he moved to the area in 2012. Taking part in the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10k is a natural extension of that community involvement and another great way to celebrate Richmond’s love for active living and big events.
“I was surprised and excited to be approached with the opportunity to take part in the Dash for the Cash,” Orleski said. “I was looking forward to the experience already since this will be my first actual race, and now I am anticipating race day on March 28 even more.”
Though he acknowledges that he still has plenty of work left to do to prepare before race day, Orleski already has plans for the $2,500 if he does cross the finish line first: he’ll donate the winnings to the VCU Massey Cancer Center, one of the official charity partners of the 10k, to help aid in their fight against cancer and support the lifesaving research being done here in Richmond.
In addition to the training he’s already done, Orleski plans to utilize the help of the Richmond Road Runners Club Advanced 10k Training Team, particularly to build speed. Orleski joked that after learning he’d been selected, “I texted my wife and said it looks like it’s time to start training so I don’t look like a fool out there,” but he knows this is a rare opportunity and a unique way to engage with the 10k, and he says he’s looking forward to the experience: “I’ll plan to do some fun stuff on RVA Coffee Stain social media leading up the race…. this will be really cool.”
Photos and Game Summary: Spiders Take Care of George Mason
A fifth straight win for the Spiders give them their best record through 26 games since 2010-11.
University of Richmond (20-6,10-3 Atlantic 10): 65
George Mason (14-12,3-10 Atlantic 10): 50
For the 21st time in program history and the first time since 2016-17, the University of Richmond men’s basketball team reached the 20-win plateau in a season as the Spiders used a strong defensive performance to pull away from visiting George Mason for a 65-50 win Wednesday night in Atlantic 10 play at the Robins Center. The victory keeps the Spiders in sole possession of third place in the A-10 and ups their record to 20-6 overall and 10-3 in league play.
The Patriots 50 points were their second-fewest in any game this season and their 19 turnovers were tied for their second-most in any contest this year. “I thought our defense was excellent,” coach Chris Mooney said. “Mason scored on us earlier in the year and they have some guys that are difficult to guard.” George Mason was the fifth straight Spiders opponent to fail to reach 60 points, Richmond’s longest stretch of keeping opponents under 60 since 2011.
Junior forward Grant Golden (Winchester, Va.) led the Spiders with a team-high 21 points in the win, his fourth game this season with 20 or more points. Golden finished 8-of-11 shooting from the field and a perfect 5-of-5 from the free throw line while grabbing seven rebounds. Golden also moved into the top 20 on the Spiders all-time scoring list, passing Dan Geriot and Kelvin Johnson. He is now 20th in school history with 1,406 career points.
“We definitely wanted to go inside,” said Mooney. “Grant is just difficult to defend. When teams double him, he’s a very good passer. He has a really good sense for how to play. He’s incredibly helpful. With most big guys, you’re constantly helping them. I think Grant is incredibly helpful to everybody else on the floor.”
Redshirt junior guard Blake Francis (Herndon, Va.) added 14 points as five different Spiders scored eight or more points. Sophomore guard Andre Gustavson (Helsinki, Finland) added nine points off the bench — all in the second half — while junior guard Nick Sherod (Richmond, Va.) scored eight points.
The Spiders struck early, posting an early 10-0 run and taking a 17-7 lead less than seven minutes into the game. Golden started hot for Richmond, scoring six-straight in the run while Francis added the last four points to extend the lead to double figures. George Mason settled in and the game slowed for the remainder of the first half with the Spiders holding a 26-19 lead at the halftime break.
The Spiders continued to add to their lead and extended it to 15 points with a 10-2 run early in the second half, taking a 50-35 advantage. Junior forward Nathan Cayo (Montreal, Quebec) and Golden converted three-point plays in the post while Gustavson capped the run with a basket on the fast break.
Richmond maintained the lead down the stretch with its defensive effort. The Spiders held George Mason to only 39.1 percent (18-of-46) shooting from the field and just 23.5 percent (4-of-17) from deep.
The Spiders 20-6 overall record is their best through 26 games since 2010-11 and their five straight wins represent Richmond’s longest conference win streak since January 2018. Next, Richmond hits the road for two-straight games beginning Saturday when it travels to St. Bonaventure for a 6:30 p.m. contest airing nationally on the NBC Sports Network.