A stellar all-around performance by guard Briante Weber and solid support from backcourt mates Treveon Graham and Melvin Johnson were enough for No. 15 Virginia Commonwealth to fight off a tough challenge from Toledo on Tuesday. The Rams emerged with a 87-78 win in their home opener at Richmond, Va.
Weber, making his season debut after a violation of team rules led to his suspension for an exhibition game as well as the Rams’ opener against Tennessee, flirted with a quadruple double. He put up a line of 18 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and nine steals.
The contest was close much of the way, with neither VCU (2-0) nor Toledo (1-1) leading by more than six points until less than two minutes remained.
Weber’s steal and layup with 1:53 remaining gave the Rams their largest lead of the game to that point, 80-72, and woke up a crowd that was nervously watching the Rockets hang around for longer than they expected.
Johnson scored 17 of his 22 points in the first half. Graham also finished with 22 points.
Toledo center Nathan Boothe had 18 points on 6-of-8 shooting, including 2-of-4 from 3-point range.
As a team, Toledo outshot VCU from the floor (50 percent to 46 percent), the 3-point arc (44 percent to 36 percent) and free-throw line (82 percent to 71 percent), but a 31-11 advantage for the Rams in points off turnovers and 16-9 advantage in second-chance points made up for the deficits.
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