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Game Guide: Cayman Islands Classic Round Two

In the semifinals, the Bearcats will get tested by Richmond.

Coppin State v Cincinnati Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Gary Clark and the No. 12 Cincinnati Bearcats will continue their trek through the Cayman Islands Classic when they tangle with the Richmond Spiders tonight.

How to Watch, Stream, Listen

  • Tipoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Television/Stream: Flohoops. Can only be streamed online and you need a subscription. So good luck.
  • Radio: 700 WLW AM
  • Announcing crew: Dan Hoard (play-by-play) and Terry Nelson (analyst)
  • Series history: Bearcats will always beat Spiders whether in the wild or on the hardwood. UC leads the all-time series 4-0 with a 77-46 rout in 2001 the most recent decision.

Who Are the Richmond Spiders?

A disastrous start to the season was righted a bit for Richmond on Monday as the Spiders vanquished UAB 63-50 in the first round of this event. That victory followed two lopsided losses to the likes of Delawawre and Jacksonville State. In fact, Richmond lost by 33 points to the Gamecocks. It was an egregiously bad loss for a team that won 22 games just last year and has always been at least competitive in the previous 11 years under head coach Chris Mooney.

Grant Golden carried the offense against the Blazers, hitting 11-of-19 shots from the floor to rack up 26 points. He also protected the rim well, blocking three shots while clearing seven rebounds. Golden is a 6’9” redshirt freshman that has started this year well, averaging 15 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. He is also blocking more than two shots an outing, but isn’t actually a great defender, with a defensive rating of 107.6.

Speaking of defense, Richmond played it pretty well against UAB, holding the Blazers to 33.3 percent shooting. Stingy play on the perimeter was most responsible, with only 4-of-23 triples finding the bottom of the net against the Spiders. That was not a knew trend for Richmond, which has let teams shoot just 28.6 percent from long range. That could spell danger in capital letters for Jarron Cumberland, Jacob Evans and Cane Broome, who all like to let it fly. However, there’s no need to fret too much. Despite Golden’s blocks and the strong three-point defense, Richmond ranks just 184th in adjusted defense.

As for other scoring threats, De’Monte Buckingham (14.3 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 3.0 APG), Jacob Gilyard (12.0 PPG) and Nick Sherod (11.3 PPG) are the other options on a rather shallow team. Only two reserves played at least 10 minutes on Monday.

Clark Came to the Caymans to Ball

You can’t blame the Bearcats for being a little distracted by the exotic location they find themselves in this week. Gary Clark has not beed phased, though. He had 24 points and 14 rebounds in UC’s less than impressive win against Buffalo on Monday. Averaging 14.3 points and nine rebounds per game, Clark is the team’s leader in PER (30.6) despite ranking sixth in usage percentage (21.2). With an offensive rating of 146.1 and a defensive rating of 74.5 its easy to see why. As always, Clark doesn’t have to throw up 20-20s to make an impact, but he has the skill to do so.

Prediction Time!

The matchup between Clark and Golden in the post might be intriguing. Golden isn’t a great one-on-one defender, but he can block a shot. Clark will need to prove his superiority, and Cumberland (seven turnovers) and Broome (two points) need to bounce back from uneven efforts in the first round. That seems like a likely outcome, as the Bearcats are built to wear down the shallow Spiders.

Cincinnati 74 Richmond 61