Deriick O'Neil registered 14 points for the Eagles in the loss.
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Richmond Spiders came into Alico Arena and knocked off the FGCU Eagles in the opening night of the Fort Myers Subregional in the O’Reilly Auto Parts College Basketball Experience Classic on Monday night.
From the opening tip, Richmond jumped out in front, gaining a 7-2 advantage just 3 minutes into the contest. The Eagles fought back, quickly erasing the deficit and gaining a lead of their own, thanks in large part to Kyle Marks. Marks’ lay-up just under four and a half minutes into the game was the first made field goal for FGCU, and it sparked a 9-0 run, putting the Eagles out in front by four. Marks added another field goal during that span, and he would finish the night with 11 points on 5-10 shooting. Both teams went back and forth exchanging baskets in a very tightly contested first half, but the Spiders’ David Gonzalvez scored 13 points on 5-6 shooting to help Richmond go into the locker room clinging to a slim lead, 33-30.
In the second half, neither team was able to pull away; the largest lead was eight, until the final minute of the game. The Spiders maintained their lead throughout the first 11 minutes of the half, opening with a 5-0 run to take an 8-point lead, but never managed to break the game open. With 8:34 to play, Reed Baker hit a three that brought the Eagles to within a point at 49-48. On the next possession, Baker’s alley-oop pass was layed in by Derrick O’Neil, giving the Eagles their first lead of the half. The Spiders bounced back quickly, running 8 consecutive points to reclaim the lead, 57-50. Delvin Franklin ended that run with a three-point basket, trimming the lead to four. That was as close as the Eagles would get, as David Gonzalvez continued his superb play, scoring six of his 25 points in the final five minutes of the game. The Spiders converted 5-6 free throws in the final minute of the game to seal the victory, 69-58.
For the Spiders, David Gonzalvez led in scoring with 25 points on 7-11 shooting including 2-4 from behind the 3-point line and 9-11 from the free throw line. Jarhon Giddings pulled down 11 rebounds and added 8 points.
Delvin Franklin led FGCU in scoring with 17, shooting 5-10 from the field, including 4-8 from 3-point range and 3-4 from the charity stripe. Kyle Marks added 11 points and 5 rebounds, and Reed Baker had a team-high 5 assists.
The O’Reilly Auto Parts College Basketball Experience Classic continues tomorrow evening in the Fort Myers Subregional at Alico Arena. UMKC, who defeated Bradley earlier Monday, 73-61, will take on Richmond at 5:00 PM, and FGCU will battle Bradley at approximately 7:00 PM.