RICHMOND, Va. -- Will Wade was concerned about turnovers before bringing No. 23 LSU to the Siegel Center, where he spent six seasons and watched VCU frustrate opponents with a frenetic pressing, trapping defensive style. He tried to prepare the Tigers for what they would face.
It didn't work.
"You can't simulate this," Wade said, gesturing toward the arena where the band is loud, the creative fans sit right on top of the court and the sellout streak has reached 137 games. "You can't simulate what they do, and they do it every night."
Former Wade recruit Marcus Santos-Silva had 17 points and 11 rebounds, and VCU turned 26 turnovers into 37 points in an 84-82 victory Wednesday night. The game ended, fittingly, with Skylar Mays losing control on a desperate drive for a tying basket.
"This is my fourth year of college basketball and this is No. 1," Mays said. "This is the toughest environment I've ever played in."
The Rams (3-0), whose contract with Wade mandated he bring his new team to the Siegel Center or have his school pay $250,000, improved to 5-2 against ranked opponents on their home court, and they did it after withstanding a furious rally at the finish.
The Tigers (1-1) took their first lead since early in the first half on two free throws by Mays with 41 seconds left.
"Sometimes you have to put your guts out on the court, make plays, figure it out, find a way," Rams Coach Mike Rhoades said.
LSU had a chance after Santos-Silva made one of two free throws with 4.9 seconds left, but Mays lost the ball.
De'Riante Jenkins and Marcus Evans added 15 points each for VCU, which was outscored 46-30 in the paint.
Mays led the Tigers with 23 points, but also had seven turnovers. Javonte Smart added 15 points and Trendon Watford scored 11.
The Rams led for most of the game, but a 15-2 run by the Tigers -- despite a stretch of five turnovers in six possessions -- tied it at 67-67 with 8:56 to go. The Rams responded with an 11-4 run started by Santos-Silva to lead 78-71 with 3:22 to play.
"We didn't have much of an answer for Santos-Silva down low," Wade said.
But the Tigers rallied again, scoring 11 of the next 14 points to take an 82-81 lead.
Jenkins, fouled on a three-point try, then made two of three free throws, and the Tigers missed their final three field-goal tries.
NO. 4 LOUISVILLE 91,
INDIANA STATE 62
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Jordan Nwora scored 21 points, Dwayne Sutton added 14 and No. 4 Louisville shot 59% from the field to run past Indiana State.
The Cardinals (3-0) made 14 of their first 17 shots for a 16-point lead through 11 minutes on the way to a 47-26 advantage at the break. Nwora's 14 points, including a pair of three-pointers got Louisville going, and Sutton had 10 before the break.
Nwora, a junior forward, finished 5 of 10 shooting for his third consecutive game of 20 points or more.
Tyreke Key led the Sycamores (0-2) with 20 points including four three-pointers.
NO. 18 OHIO STATE 76,
NO. 10 VILLANOVA 51
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Duane Washington Jr. had 14 points and four other players scored 10 or more points as Ohio State started hot and ran over Villanova.
Washington opened the game with a pair of three-pointers to set the tone as the Buckeyes moved to 3-0 with a significant early-season victory.
D.J. Carton and Luther Muhammad each had 11 points, and CJ Walker and Kaleb Wesson added 10 apiece.
Jermaine Samuels had 14 points and Cole Swider had 11 for the Wildcats (1-1).
NO. 11 TEXAS TECH 103,
HOUSTON BAPTIST 74
MIDLAND, Texas -- Freshman Jahmi'us Ramsey scored 25 points on 10-of-13 shooting, TJ Holyfield had 21 points on 9 of 10 field goals and Texas Tech beat Houston Baptist.
The Red Raiders (3-0) had four players score 10 or more points while shooting 60% from the field (40 of 67).
Jalon Gates had 21 points with five three-pointers to lead Houston Baptist (0-3), which jumped out to a 9-0 lead before Texas Tech took over.
Virginia Commonwealth guard Marcus Evans (2) and his teammates react Wednesday after the Rams defeated No. 23 LSU 84-82 in Richmond, Va.
Sports on 11/14/2019
Print Headline: Turnovers spoil LSU's comeback bid