Dayton Flyers top VCU to win Atlantic 10 championship


Dayton Flyers top VCU to win Atlantic 10 championship

Charles Cooke and Scoochie Smith scored 20 points apiece as the Dayton Flyers beat VCU 79-72 on Wednesday night to clinch the Atlantic 10 championship.

The Flyers led by as many as 14 in the second half but had to hold off a Rams rally in the final minute.

With VCU trailing by two and under 20 seconds to go, JeQuan Lewis missed a three-pointer from the corner, and UD senior Kyle Davis made both ends of a one-and-one with 16 seconds left to make it a two-possession game again.

Cooke tallied 15 points and Smith added 11 as Dayton outscored VCU 45-38 in the first half.

The Flyers used a 12-3 run midway through the first half to open up a double-digit lead for the first time.

Dayton’s Scoochie Smith drives against Mo Alie-Cox of VCU in the first half (Photo: David Jablonski/CMG Ohio) Staff Writer

Kendall Pollard started it with a driving layup on the baseline, and Cooke finished it free throws coming off a technical foul called against the VCU bench with 6:59 left in the first half.

Those left Dayton on top 26-15.

The Flyers were up 11 again after Cooke’s layup with :54 on the clock, but VCU scored the last two buckets of the half to close within seven.

Justin Tillman scored 12 points for VCU.

The first half was a foulfest as the teams combined to be called for 24 personal fouls, including 12 on each team.

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