BY DOMENIC ALLEGRA SPORTS EDITOR
On Saturday, Mason defeated VCU in a closely fought contest, marking the third win out of four games in Richmond.
“This [win] means that we can play with anyone,” head coach Dave Paulsen said after the game. “This [win] means when we’re locked in and focused and resilient we can be a really good team.”
Here are three takeaways from the Patriots’ win:
MASON NEEDS TO CONTINUE MOMENTUM
“VCU is one of those staple programs,” sophomore Josh Oduro said. “Wins against them are big time for us. We look forward to every single time we play them here in the Siegel Center.”
After defeating VCU on the road last year, the Patriots won only two of their remaining seven games of the regular season.
“What we have to do was like — last year this was the best win of the year and we let it settle and stay as the best win of the year,” Paulsen said. “We’re not done, we got to keep getting better and get ready for two home games next week.”
If the Patriots want any shot of making it to Saturday of the Atlantic 10 Tournament, they’ll have to continue this momentum.
JOSH ODURO SHINES BRIGHT
The sophomore recorded 26 points and 6 rebounds in this contest while finishing 10-13 from the free throw line.
“I thought, obviously, Josh Oduro was phenomenal,” Paulsen said. “He knocked down his free-throws and we played through him.”
This game showed how Oduro can lead the team and take control of the game.
NEW LINEUP SHOWS OFF CHEMISTRY
A new lineup of Jamal Hartwell, Jordan Miller, Javon Greene, Josh Oduro and Otis Frazier showed off great chemistry in this game. For the last eight minutes of the second half, Paulsen had this lineup out on the court.
During that eight minutes, Mason overcame a five-point lead and outscored VCU 13-8, forcing overtime at 67-67.
“I think in the last eight minutes we just did a great job getting a shot, we executed, got the ball, had Josh a little in the post a couple times, got a nice backdoor play out of a timeout,” Paulsen said. “We got Jordan Miller in isolation [plays], so our guys are really able to execute there and I thought we really defended.”
Mason will take the floor again Feb. 24 against GW at 6 p.m. on MASN.