The Hokies held the spartans to their lowest point total since President Reagan’s first year in office behind the most impressive defensive effort by Tech all season. The Hokies held unc-g to 27% shooting from the field. unc-g scored 39 points TOTAL tonight, and only 14 in the first half. The 39 points is 33 points below the spartans’ season average. The spartans committed 18 turnovers, shot 1 of 18 from three point land, and had 8 shots blocked.
unc-g’s all-time leading scorer, Kyle Hines, scored 38% of the spartans’ points tonight with 15 on 5 of 12 shooting. Jeff Allen held his own against the senior Hines by scoring 16 and rebounding 12 in only 22 minutes. For the third time this year, Allen got into foul trouble, which limited his playing time.
After Allen, A.D. Vassallo poured in 10 points, butÂ shot justÂ 4 of 16 from the floor. The Hokies shot 41% from the behind the arc for the game. Malcolm Delaney led the team with 3 threes, all in the second half. The big news of the night was sophmore guard Paul Debnam seeing his first action ever, playing 1 minute and scoring his first 2 points.Â Tom Amalfe also made his VT debut, and Marcus Travis (Sr) and Terrance Vinson (r-So) made their 2007-08 debuts in the rout.
The battle of the boards was pretty even with unc-g outrebounding Tech 35-34; each team had 14 offensive rebounds but 11 of VT’s came in the first half.Â The Hokies did a good job on the boards in the first half, cleaning up most of unc-g’s 15 first half misses.
Tech opened with a 11-0 run and closed with a 7-0 run. The game was never close, a rarity for college basketball these days, especially Hokie basketball.
Even thoughÂ Tech wasÂ home tonight, if you had told me that the Hokies would beat the spartans by a greater margin this year over last (74-51), I would have laughed in your face. Then again, I also had no idea that the Hokies would return to what has been their bread and butter over the past 3 years — playing suffocating defense that forces turnovers and lowers opponent shooting percentage.
The Hokies face gw this coming Sunday at The Cassell at 5:30PM.Â Welcome back, wynton witherspoon!Â (sarcasm)
Niemo’s Notes: Almost a year ago to the day (12/10/06), VT beat appalachian state 69-37 at the Cassell.Â In that game, appy state scored just 9 first half points on two field goals in the first half.Â unc-g missed the g-spot tonight almost as much, hitting just five first half field goals and scoring just 14 points.Â VT wasn’t much better, just shooting 36%, but the 11 offensive rebounds helped make up for that.
unc-g was 1 for 18 on three-pointers?Â Heck, I could do that.Â Believe me, I could do that.Â Heck, my Mom could do that.Â That’s just 5.6%.Â My car loan interest rate is higher than that.
Jeff Allen, who is built almost exactly like unc-g’s kyle hines, showed the difference between unc-g’s all-time leading scorer (hines) and the best VT post player in the last decade.Â Allen was much better, but he must figure out how to stay out of foul trouble.
Of the VT starters, four (Allen, Washington, Thorns, and Diakite) had two fouls at the half and had to sit late in the first half.Â Again, VT is playing defense with their hands too much, especially the guards.Â Reaching in and being too aggressive is hurting the Hokies.Â Foul trouble will kill the Hokies in tight games.Â Gordon and Dowdell stole or deflected passes, they didn’t reach (much).