On Monday night, the Vanderbilt Commodores’ hot start was enough to survive a disastrous finish.
Hosting the Davidson Wildcats, Vanderbilt jumped out to an 11-2 lead early on and, after Davidson climbed back to within 17-16 midway through the first half, Vanderbilt went on a 12-0 run to open up a cushion. And keep in mind, all of this was happening with Aaron Nesmith, the SEC’s leading scorer, held scoreless until the 3:37 mark of the first half. Vanderbilt shot 68 percent from the floor on its way to a 44-27 lead at the break.
Things seemed to be going just fine early on in the second half; an Aaron Nesmith three-pointer with 13:09 left in the game gave Vanderbilt a 59-39 lead, and it looked like Vanderbilt would cruise to an easy win.
And then, the shots stopped falling. Completely. Like, Vanderbilt would go the final 13:09 without making a field goal.
Granted, Vanderbilt still won thanks to scoring 17 points at the foul line, and Vanderbilt never actually trailed for the entire game (in fact, the five-point final margin was the closest Davidson got in the second half) — but, seriously guys, can we not do that again?
Scotty Pippen Jr. led four Commodores in double figures with 18 points; Aaron Nesmith finished with 17 after scoring just four in the second half. Vanderbilt improves to 8-4 on the season and closes its nonconference schedule with SMU on Saturday.