Richmond, VA (SportsNetwork.com) - Terry Larrier scored 15 points to lead 14th-ranked VCU in its 12th consecutive win, a 72-48 throttling of George Washington in a key Atlantic 10 clash.
This matchup between two of the conference's top three teams was no contest after the Rams held the Colonials to a woeful 5-of-26 shooting performance in the second half and embarked on a 20-5 run during the period. George Washington finished just 26.9 percent from the field overall.
"I think it's the best one we've had in awhile," Rams head coach Shaka Smart said afterward. "It was a completely different energy than we had in our last game against Saint Louis (a last-second win). Our guys did a good job of bringing enthusiasm to the defensive end."
JeQuan Lewis added 13 points and three steals for VCU (17-3, 7-0 A-10), which hasn't lost since a 74-57 home setback to still-unbeaten Virginia on Dec. 6. Mo Alie-Cox contributed 10 points and eight rebounds to the rout.
Kethan Savage paced George Washington (16-5, 6-2) with 18 points and Joe McDonald had 11 in the defeat, just the Colonials' second in their last 10 outings.
The Rams' first big surge of the night came late in the first half, with their persistent pressure defense fueling a 12-2 spurt to close out the period.
After struggling to hit shots early on and trailing 19-17 with seven minutes to go in the stanza, VCU induced turnovers on four straight George Washington possessions to ignite the flurry. Larrier had seven points during the run, including a layup and free throw that put the Rams up 25-21 with 2:41 left in the half.
"Larrier killed us," said Colonials head coach Mike Lonergan. "Their depth really hurts us."
Alie-Cox followed Larrier's 3-point play with a close-range bucket and two foul shots that sent the Rams into the break with an eight-point advantage despite shooting just 33.3 percent for the frame.
The Colonials were able to get the deficit down to four early in the second half, but the Rams again turned up their defensive intensity to mount a game- breaking tear.
GW missed 10 consecutive field goal attempts during a 16-2 sequence capped by Alie-Cox's run-out slam off a Colonials' giveaway and Melvin Johnson's transition layup that lengthened VCU's lead to 47-29 with 12 minutes remaining.
Savage finally ended George Washington's drought with a 3-point play, but layups by Johnson and Lewis had the Rams up comfortably at 51-32 with 9:53 to play.
The Colonials never threatened thereafter, with the margin reaching 29 points when a basket by the Rams' Justin Tillman made the score 70-41 entering the final two minutes.
VCU improved to 7-0 in conference play for just the second time in its history, matching the 2006-07 squad that won its first seven tests in the Colonial Athletic Association ... George Washington made just 1-of-17 tries from 3-point range ... The Colonials have lost all three all-time meetings with the Rams in Richmond by a combined 68 points ... The win was the Rams' 16th straight at home in A-10 games.