VCU pulls away from ECU in fourth, wins 65-48

ECU Pirates

Danae McNeal (ECU Sports Information photo)

RICHMOND, Va. – A cold stretch in the fourth quarter was the difference as the East Carolina women’s basketball team fell to VCU 65-48 on Wednesday night.

The Pirates fall to 4-4 on the season, snapping a two-game winning streak. The Rams improve to 4-2 on the year.

How It Happened

  • Danae McNeal and Alexsia Rose carried the Pirate offense in the first quarter. After a 6-0 VCU run to open the game, McNeal scored or assisted on eight of ECU’s nine points as the Pirates took a 9-6 lead. The Rams answered with a 7-0 run of their own before McNeal buried a triple, giving her nine points, an assist and three steals in the opening frame. Rose took over from there, scoring the Pirates’ final five points of the first to keep East Carolina within four, 21-17 despite VCU shooting 5-of-6 (.833) from three.
  • Da’Ja Green opened the second quarter with six straight points, first getting fouled on a triple before making all three free throws and then burying a shot from beyond the arc. After a Taniyah Thompson layup put East Carolina up 25-23, the Rams went on another 7-0 run, finally ended by a Rose layup. McNeal got the final basket of the half for ECU off her fifth steal, making it 33-29 at the break.
  • The Pirates struck first in the third quarter, as seven points from Morgan Moseley and layups by Thompson and Raven Johnson gave ECU a 40-39 lead. But VCU answered once again, regaining the lead thanks to three layups and the Rams carried a 46-42 lead into the final quarter.
  • After a Ram triple opened the fourth, Green answered right back for ECU, getting into the lane for an old-fashioned three-point play. From there though, the Pirate offense could not get any of its shots to fall. ECU did not score for 5:21 as VCU rattled off a 10-0 run in that span, pushing the lead to 59-45. Thompson finally snapped the streak with a three-pointer, but that was the final field goal for ECU as the Rams closed on a 6-0 run.

Leading Pirates

  • Thompson led East Carolina with 12 points.
  • McNeal finished with 11 points and grabbed a career-high six steals, the most by a Pirate since Lashonda Monk had six in the AAC Championship Quarterfinals in March.
  • Synia Johnson tied her career-high with six rebounds to lead East Carolina on the glass.
  • Moseley finished with seven points, a season-high and one off her career-high.
  • For just the second time this season, the Pirates lost the turnover battle, turning it over 21 times compared to 17 for VCU.

Up Next

East Carolina will be back home on Sunday afternoon when they host Towson. Tipoff is at 12 noon as the first part of a doubleheader with the East Carolina men’s basketball team and it will be the Pirates’ annual Diabetes Awareness game.

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