This is a rebuilding season for the Richmond Spiders. Having had four starters graduate from last year’s Sweet Sixteen team, everyone knew this year’s edition would be a work in process.
Prior to tonight’s game, Richmond alternated between very good and downright miserable – very often in the same game. About the only solid game the team played from start to finish was against a weak William and Mary squad.
Tonight’s game against Temple marked the first time Richmond (now 11-7) controlled an entire game against a tough opponent. The Owls knocked off #5 Duke earlier in the month and outlasted a tough St. Louis team on the road. They were 11-4 going into tonight’s contest at the Robins Center.
Derrick Williams, a 6-6, 275 pound power forward coupled with Darius Garrett, the nation’s leading shot blocker, to control the glass on both sides of the court. Williams, a sophomore with a bright future, was also productive on offense, scoring 18 points. Although only 6-6, he has the wingspan of a seven-footer and shoots fouls with the touch of an experienced guard.
It would be hasty to assume we’ve turned the corner, but tonight put us on the right path.
Photo credit: Mark Gormus of the Richmond Times Dispatch. He captures the mood of a contest as well as the action.