The Hokies took game one of this pivotal three game home stand with their 78-75 victory over the uva cavaliers on Saturday. There is no denying that A.D. Vassallo â€“ 29 points, including the decisive turn around baseline jumper with 18.3 seconds to go â€“ and Malcolm Delaney â€“ 24 points to go with savvy ball handling and leadership â€“ carried the Hokies to the must-win victory in Cassell. But there were some other positive signs that came from this game. One would have to include the play of Terrell Bell. Bell hit a three-pointer from the wing in the first half and played with confidence the entire game. His defense on uva freshman phenom sylvan landesberg in the second half was commendable and he had a huge steal off a uva baseline inbound attempt that led to a break away dunk by Delaney. Bellâ€™s continued development will be key to whether the Hokies can make a run this season in the ACC.
Cheick Diakite and Lewis Witcher also gave the Hokies quality minutes, but they along with Victor Davila continued to miss way too many point blank shots. Every game from here out figures to be tightly contested so converting on these will be a must for the Hokies.
Jeff Allen continues to struggle, going 0 for 7 on field goal attempts againt virginia. He looked especially tentative against cavalier freshman assane sene. However Frank Beamer has to be taking note of Big Jeff, who is in the mold of current NFL star tight ends Tony Gonzales (cal) and Antonio Gates (kent st.) who were both college basketball stars before moving on to their prolific football careers. Will we ever see Allen line up at tight end in the fall for the Hokies? Who knows, but regardless, opposing teams who attempt to full court press the Hokies had better have their heads on a swivel. Just ask cavalier guards sammy zeglinski and calvin baker, both of whom were tkoâ€™d by Allenâ€™s solid screens, much to the delight of the Cassell crowd.
Allen did seem to respond to his mid second half benching by Seth Greenberg and played better inside down the stretch, finishing with six rebounds to go along with a steal and blocked shot. Letâ€™s hope the Dunking Donut can quickly regain his form starting Wednesday night against the richmond spiders.
The quote of the week this week came from ESPN broadcaster and former st. johnâ€™s and New York Knick star Mark Jackson, who was taking a break from his normal NBA duties to broadcast last Wednesdayâ€™s davidson â€“ duke contest. Jackson described blue devil backup guard greg paulus as â€œA true professionalâ€¦on the college level.â€
Finally, the Mr. Inconsistency award has to go to the boston college eagles, who followed up their shocking win at #1 north carolina with home losses to harvard (the crimsonâ€™s first win against a ranked team, thatâ€™s right, EVER) and miami. It will be interesting to see which bc team shows up next Saturday in Cassell.