On one telegraphed University of Richmond pass by Darien Brothers, coach Chris Mooney’s hands covered his eyes while the ball still was in the air, before the interception he knew was coming.
That giveaway turned into a quick George Washington basket, as did several other errant Spiders’ passes in an 83-65 loss at the Smith Center in an Atlantic 10 Conference game Wednesday night. The Colonials were credited with 23 points off 13 UR turnovers, and shot 69.2 percent in the second half, when they made 18 of 26 shots and scored 50 points.
Richmond (11-8, 2-2) played without point guard Cedrick Lindsay, a 6-foot-1 sophomore from Washington, who has a bruised knee. Freshman Kendall Anthony, who’s 5-8, started in Lindsay’s place and handled most of Richmond’s ballhandling responsibilities.
The Spiders committed 10 first-half turnovers, which helped put them behind 33-27 at the break. Without Lindsay, they never developed offensive flow. The Spiders had five first-half field goals, but stayed in it with free throws. They struggled to get open 3-point shots, their specialty.
UR was averaging 8.6 3-pointers per game. The Spiders converted one in four first-half attempts, 3 of 15 for the night.
“They disrupted our offense,” said Brothers (17 points). “They denied all passes. We just didn’t stay calm.”
As is often the case, lack of scoring led to poor defense. GW (7-11, 2-2) came in shooting 41.6 percent.
The Colonials made 58.2 percent before 2,464 at the Smith Center, taking advantage of UR turnovers to score easily in transition, and getting into Richmond’s defense for mid-range jumpers or layups.
“I think the biggest thing was GW was the more aggressive team,” said Mooney. “They really came out and attacked the game and were more aggressive than us from the beginning.”
Without Lindsay driving, drawing defenders and kicking out passes, Richmond’s chances from 3-point range were limited.
“We were a little stagnant on offense. A lot of guys weren’t into their normal game rhythm,” said UR center Darrius Garrett.
A result of missing Lindsay?
“I wouldn’t say a direct result,” Garrett answered. “But of course it has a little bit to do with it. Cedrick has been kind of our ball captain. But we still have to move forward while he’s out.”
Free throws kept the Spiders alive in the first half. UR scored 16 of those points on 18 foul shots. GW led for all but 30 seconds of the opening half and by 10 after 12 minutes.