For interim head coach Wes Miller's post-game comments, click here.
GREENSBORO, N.C.—Four players scored in double figures for UNCG but the Spartans couldn't overcome 56 percent shooting by VCU as the Rams handed UNCG an 80-68 loss on Thursday at Greensboro Coliseum.
Trevis Simpson led the Spartans (2-11) with 20 points but it wasn't enough to prevent UNCG from suffering its eighth straight loss. VCU (9-3) got a game-high 21 points from Bradford Burgess as the Rams won their sixth consecutive game.
Though UNCG lost by double figures, the Spartans never really let the Rams pull away.
VCU led 38-34 at halftime after a first half which featured three ties and three lead changes. UNCG led by as many as three points when a Simpson three-pointer made it 10-7 at the 13:32 mark.
After the Rams pushed out to a 24-16 lead with 8:46 remaining, the Spartans pulled to within a point on three different occasions but couldn't take the lead as VCU settled for a four-point cushion at the break.
The second half was nearly identical to the first. VCU had trouble gaining breathing room on the Spartans and UNCG couldn't get closer than a basket in the early going. After trailing by as many as seven points (43-36), the Spartans twice cut the lead down to two with the last time coming when Aaron Brackett made a short jumper to make it 45-43 with 14:17 left.
But VCU responded with a quick 8-0 run, grabbing a 53-43 advantage on a Briante Weber jumper with 11:55 remaining. The lead quickly swelled to 65-50 as Rob Brandenurg scored eight points over the next three-and-half minutes for the Rams.
UNCG cut it to eight points twice but never got any closer as the Rams went 7-of-8 from the free throw line in the final 1:51.
Simpson finished 6-of-18 from the field and 6-of-8 from the free throw line before fouling out with less than 30 seconds to play. Derrell Armstrong scored 11 points and added five assists and two steals, while Brackett and Kyle Randall scored 10 each for the Spartans. David Williams grabbed a career-high nine rebounds.
Brandenburg finished with 17 for the Rams, while Juvonte Reddic chipped in with 15 points and six rebounds.
The Spartans shot 40 percent from the field, including a 6-of-22 effort from 3-point range. UNCG out-rebounded VCU, 31-30.
VCU went 21-of-26 from the free throw line, compared to 10-of-15 for the Spartans.
After short holiday break, the Spartans return to action at Richmond, 4 p.m., Dec. 30.