The season is over. The college careers of two of the most talented players ever to suit up for Virginia Tech have come to a close. The No. 1 seeded Hokies fell to the No. 4 seed, wichita state, 79-76 in overtime. As has been the case for so many games, when Delaney has a big game, Tech seems to lose. The senior from Baltimore, Md., had a game-high 30 points. Sophomore Erick Green had 17 points.
Another sophomore, Manny Atkins, hit a big three pointer in the final minute of regulation to give the Hokies a 69-66 lead, but the shockers tied the game to send it to overtime. With state leading 76-74 and with the possession, Green stole the ball and fed a streaking Terrell Bell for a layup to tie the game at 76. But state inbounded the ball and went the length of the court for an uncontested layup to retake the lead, 78-76, with 2.2 seconds left in the game.
The Hokies inbounded the ball and Delaney appeared to be fouled, but the ref swallowed his whistle and instead called Delaney for stepping out of bounds. The Hokies fouled, sent state to the line, and that was the game.
Jeff Allen reverted to his old ways by fouling out with 6:12 left in the game with the Hokies trailing by two. That sealed Tech’s fate as they had no size and no inside presence to either score or defend in the paint. Allen finished with 10 points and seven rebounds. The call was more than questionable as the shockers player took a dook-like flop to help sell it.
Delaney, a first-team All-ACC selection, shot lights out in the first half, hitting 6/9 from the field and 3/5 from behind the arc. Victor Davila, who had been battling an injured shoulder, started and played respectably, though you could tell the shoulder was bothering him, particularly when he air-balled a free throw in the first half. He’s bad from the charity stripe, but he at least hits rim when he misses.
The shockers opened the second half with an 11-3 run to take a 41-35 lead. After a steal and fast-break layup at the other end for wichita state, Joe Ragland was called for a technical foul, for something he must have said to Delaney after scoring the bucket. Delaney hit both free throws to cut the lead to 41-39, but then followed it up by committing his third personal foul with 16 minutes to play in the game.
Delaney stayed in the game, despite the three personals, with 21 of the Hokies’ 39 points at that point. After falling behind by six, 41-35, the Hokies used a slow, but steady 13-7 run to tie the game at 48 on Terrell Bell’s first points of the game – a three from the left corner.
That’s it for now. Niemo will likely have a season-recap in the days ahead, but for now, this season is mercifully over. See you in eight months, Hokie fans.