The days leading up to tonight’s game reminded me of Super Bowl week… way too much hype followed by a lackluster game. And I am not just writing that because the Hokies lost.
I felt that the guard battle once again did not live up to expectations. j.r. reynolds shot 3 of 15 from the field. sean singletary did have a better game tonight than in Blacksburg, but still wasn’t spectacular (5 of 13 from the field and 4 fouls). After the first half, Dowdell was showing signs of the carolina game in the dean dome, but in the end, he had no help and ran out of gas. And Jamon Gordon was in foul trouble the whole game, which limited his production.
The game did not have many spurts, only 3, all in the first half. uva jumped out to early leads of 13-3 and 16-5 lead behind solid shooting. Virginia Tech picked up the intensity on defense (with Gordon on the bench, surprisingly) and executed their only run of the night, up 23-20 with 5:36 left til halftime. Then, Adrian Joseph scored the next five points and uva did not relinquish the lead from there on out. This led to a pretty boring 2nd half. The lead hovered around 8 or 10 points. Neither team took control of the game.
Finally, not that this is that important, but there were no SportsCenter highlights from either team tonight. Package this together and you get a basketball game that fell flat.
I will give credit to the hoos though. They executed their game better than Tech did theirs.
Contributions from those uva players not named reynolds or singletary was one of the three difference makers tonight. Diane scored 13, Cain had 8 points and 9 boards, Soroye scored five, and Joseph had seven. In the February 10th tilt, these four players combined for six points. Advantage hoos.
Tech did have their opportunities to win this game, but just could not execute. The Hokies had one of their poorest nights from the charity stripe, shooting just 12 of 21. If they are able to convert 4 or 5 more, then we have a whole different atmosphere in the second half.
Finally, it was obvious to anyone who watched the game, that the three ball was the key difference maker. uva was 10 of 16 and Tech was 2 of 15. The hoos live and die (mostly livin’ this year) by the three, and they killed us behind the arc tonight. 30 to 6. Ouch. A.D. Vassallo had one of his worst shooting nights of the year (1 of 8, 0 of 4 from three), and as he goes, normally the Hokies do.
So, wahoos everywhere are celebrating a home basketball victory against the Hokies. Wait a minute, did I just type that? I thought their rival was carolina. (I’m surprised they didn’t rush the court)
I just hope we get to see them in Tampa.