Tag Archive | "maryland"

The Wild Turkey (and lots of it) Breakdown | md 60, VT 55


THE GLASS HALF FULL:

  • Tech gave up 53 first half points to maryland in the first meeting, but just 24 today (4 in the final 10 minutes)
  • The Hokies gave up 94 points in the first meeting with maryland, but just 60 today.
  • Erick Green scored 29 points, including 24 of Tech’s first 41 points.  He added 3 steals.
  • Cadarian Raines had 14 points on 7/13 shooting, most of which was against the 7’1″ Alex Len.  He also have 5 blocks, tying a career high.
  • Tech committed just 7 turnovers for the game (+8 on turnover margin)
  • VT snagged 18 offensive rebounds in 47 opportunities (38%).

THE GLASS HALF EMPTY:

  • Tech has led at the half in three straight games and lost all three.  They were tied at the break in the game before that and lost that game, too.  
  • 2nd Half (Lack of) Adjustments: The Hokies were up 27-24 at the half tonight but the terps jumped out to a 7-0 start to the 2nd half and led the final 19:14 of the game.  miami, who also trailed by 3 at the half, used a 9-2 run to take the lead to start the 2nd half and led all but 16 seconds of the final 17:40.
  • Jarell Eddie was 1/8 tonight for 2 points.  He finished 3/20 (15%) on FGs and 0/11 on 3s against maryland with 7 total points in 2 games.  Jarell is hitting just 28% of his 3s in ACC games.
  • Robert Brown was 1/9 on FGs (made his first shot of the game) for 2 points.  He’s now shooting 24% in ACC play and 11.5% on 3s in ACC action.
  • Tech made just 9/16 FTs (56%).  They were #1 in the ACC coming into conference play from the line at 73%, but are hitting just 67% in league games.
  • Jake Layman scored a still career high 20 points vs VT in the first meeting, including 18 in the first half.  Tech left him wide open allowing him to score 8 in the first 4 minutes tonight (14 for the game  – which was his 2nd highest output of the season).  He averaged 17 ppg in 2 games vs VT, and just 6.1 ppg in his other 8 ACC contests.  Layman scored 27 points in the first half against VT this year.
  • In the middle of the second half with the score close, VT went to a half court trap but it was so obvious (the trappers were 20 feet away), maryland easily burned it for two layups.
  • VT got just 4 second chance points off 18 offensive rebounds (how is that possible?!).
  • Green and Raines were 17/36 (47%).  The rest of the team was 5/29 (17%).
  • maryland was 10/23 from the line… and won.
  • Tech was 2/18 (11% from behind their arc; their fewest made 3s and lowest 3-Pt% in ACC play (they had been held to just 2 made 3s twice pre-ACC and were 2/20 on 3s vs byu)
  • VT is averaging just 60.4 points in regulation over their last 7 ACC games.
  • The Hokies have lost 5 straight ACC games for just the 2nd time, and first time in 7 years.  They have never lost 6 in a row.
  • The announced crowd tonight was 5,465.  That was the 2nd smallest Cassell crowd for an ACC game ever (the smallest was last week vs miami — 5,436).

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Game Highlights | maryland (5-5) 60, VT (2-7) 55


Virginia Tech loses their 5th straight ACC game (just the 2nd time they’ve ever done that and first time in 7 years), falling 60-55 at the Cassell to be swept by maryland. VT has never lost 6 straight ACC games.

In Tech’s last four games they’ve been tied at the half once and led three times, but lost all four games.

 

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Game Plus/Minus | maryland 60, VT 55


Barksdale continues to lead the team in plus/minus, but was benched for the first 13 minutes of the game.  He had a +5 in 26 minutes tonight.  Will Johnston did a great job filling in for the flu-ridden Rankin, getting a +6 tonight (best on the team).  Rankin is last on the team in terms of plus/minus — you draw your own conclusions.

 

md Season Wins Losses Avg +/-
Player +/- +/- 11 11 Per Game
Barksdale +5 62 7.4 -1.9 3.0
Brown -8 33 11.5 -9.3 1.6
Green -2 23 14.5 -12.4 1.0
Eddie -11 9 10.3 -9.5 0.4
Wood -4 5 5.8 -5.9 0.3
Raines -3 -14 6.8 -8.1 -0.6
Patrick DNP -5 -1.5 0.5 -0.8
Johnston +6 -27 0.1 -3.1 -1.5
Donlon DNP -7 -4.0 0.5 -1.8
van Zegeren -8 -40 4.0 -7.6 -1.8
Racer DNP -20 -9.5 -0.3 -2.9
Beyer DNP -47 1.3 -11.9 -3.4
Rankin DNP -93 1.3 -10.5 -4.7
TEAM -5 -25 11.5 -13.7 -1.1

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Game Recap | maryland (5-5) 60, Hokies (2-7) 55


Make it four straight moral victories for the Hokies and five straight losses.

Thursday night at Cassell Coliseum, Virginia Tech played the visiting maryland terrapins tough, but couldn’t pull it out in the final minutes (sound familiar) and lost 60-55, giving the terps their first ACC road win of the season.

This was a game of streaks. The Hokies fell behind early and trailed by 11 points, before storming back to take a 27-24 half-time lead courtesy of a 17-3 run to end the half.

The terps came out of the break on fire and jumped out to a 9-0 run to take a six-point lead. The Hokies kept it close thanks to Erick “It ain’t easy being” Green and his game-high 29 points.

For the third straight game, Cadarian Raines scored in double-figures, scoring 14 points tonight and played maryland’s Alex Len pretty tough. Do the math (challenging after a few Wild Turkeys) and Green and Raines combined for 43 of VT’s 55 points. Even more math reveals that the rest of the team combined for 12 points.

Jake Layman, who torched the Hokies in College Park earlier this season, earning him a spot in the TechHoops.com Opponent Hall of Fame, led the terps in the game, but with a mere 14 points.

This was an ugly game to watch. The Hokies were 2-of-18 from three-point range (11 percent). The terps were 10-of-23 from the free throw line. VT did manage to keep the turnovers in check, only giving it up seven times.

Though it was painful to watch for the most part, the game did have some exciting moments, including some BRRAAAAAHHHHH dunks by Raines.

As for the Opponent Hall of Fame, I’m not sure we have any worthy nominees. Tech’s defense

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Previews (2-for-1) | maryland (4-5) @ VT (2-6) – Thursday, 9 PM | ga tech (2-7) @ VT (2-6) – Saturday, 1 PM


Spread: maryland by 4.5 (seems low but Vegas usually knows what they are doing).

The Hokies have a tight slate this week, with two games just 38 hours apart on Thursday and Saturday (both are at the Cassell).  Let’s skip Thursday’s contest for now, because I’m GUARANTEEING A HOKIE VICTORY on Saturday against ‘Groupon’ Udofia and the georgia tech yellow jackets!  How can I do that with a VT team that is 2-6 in the ACC this year and 6-20 in their last 26 ACC regular season games?  Easy…

  • VT is 7-0 all time against georgia tech in the Cassell, including 5-0 in ACC play
  • The Hokies are 8-1 in ACC short-turnaround games (games played less than 48 hours after VT’s last ACC game), including this buzzer beater over gt last year – DORENZO HUDSON BEATS THE buzzER
  • The lesser tech is 8-52 in their last 60 ACC road games.  Paul Hewitt was 7-41, and since winning his first ACC road game at gt, Brian Gregory is now 1-11 away from the ATL.
  • gt is coming off a devastating loss at home as un-bee-lievably they let Michael “Walk-Off” Snaer hit his 5th game winning shot (one thing he could do… is finger roll) in 13 months to sting the jackets 56-54.
  • So, there you have it, I am guaranteeing a Tech victory (just kidding)… a VIRGINIA TECH victory on Saturday*

*Offer not valid in the continental USA and cash value of guarantee is $0.00000001

As for Thursday, well, we shall see.  One thing that always impressed me about Coach Greenberg was his teams got better between Game 1 and Game 2 against an opponent.  For example, VT lost by 35 at duke in 2005, but beat the devils later that year.  In 2008, the Hokies lost by 39 at unc but lost by just 2 on a late Hansbrough putback in the ACC Tourney.  Last year, VT lost by 15 at home to duke, then took them to OT later in the season at Cameron Indoor.  On Thursday we will find out if Coach Johnson can also rally the troops and be more competitive against a team that pasted them by 23 points at maryland just a month ago.  I think we will play them tougher and keep the margin in single digits, but I do expect 7’1″ Alex Len to be too much for the Hokies.

maryland:

  • Then: @md 94, VT 71 – RECAP - OPP HALL OF FAME – LAYMAN - PLUS MINUS - maryland led 34-31 with 6 minutes to go in the first half, but a 15-2 run helped the terps go into the break up 53-37 behind 18 first half points from Jake Layman (he hit 4 three-pointers).  Green had 28 for VT, including 10/11 FTs.  Brown had 11 but on 4/15 shooting and JvZ tied his career high with 10.  C.J. Barksdale did not play (coach’s decision).
  • Since: After exploding for 53 first half points against Tech and 94 for the game, the terps scored just 92 combined first half points in their next 4 games (23 per) including just 14 points at miami.  And they were held to 52 points or less in 3 of those 4 games (i.e. less in a full game 75% of the time then they had in one half against VT).  maryland had lost 5 of 7 before thumping wake forest 86-60 on Saturday to get to 4-5 in the ACC.
  • The Match-Up: Tech gave up 4 offensive rebounds that resulted in 8 second chance points for maryland in the first 4 minutes, allowing maryland to go up by 9.   The terps would also hit 7 first half 3-pointers.  In this game, the Hokies must do a better job on the defensive glass (having C.J.B. will help) and defend the 3 better.  Given Tech’s improved defense of late (66.5 ppg given up in regulation in their last 6 games after giving up 91.3 in their previous 4) and 3-point defense (unc was just 21% on 5/24 three-pointers… albeit just one game) I expect a much closer game.  Tech must stop Len.
  • Ho-Key: maryland is last in the ACC with a turnover margin of -6.4 (I should point out VT is next to last at -3.1).  If Tech can limit their turnovers as they did against clemson and create live ball turnovers that lead to transition buckets, the Hokies will have a fighting chance.
  • Stat to Watch: maryland is 3-0 in ACC action when Layman, who had a still career high 20 against the Hokies, scores in double digits, but they are 1-5 when he doesn’t.

georgia tech:

  • Then: VT 70, @gt 65 (OT) – RECAP - HIGHLIGHTS - PLUS MINUS - The Hokies trailed the entire second half but overcame an 11-point deficit with 14 minutes to go to tie the game with 24 seconds left.  In overtime, VT jumped out to a 7-point lead and then held off the jackets thanks to two baskets from Robert Brown and 4/4 from line in the final minute.  Erick Green had 28 points, 24 in the final 26 minutes of this 45 minute game.  Barksdale chipped in a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds, and Brown had 10 although he was 0/9 from the field in regulation.
  • Since: gt started 0-5 in ACC play but have since won 2 of 4 (both at home – 82-62 over wake and then shocking uva on Sunday 66-60, outscoring uva 18-3 in the final 8 minutes to come back from 9 down).  But the jackets just lost a heartbreaker on Tuesday night at home to florida state as Michael “Walk-Off” Snaer scored on a finger-roll as time expired to give fsu a 56-54 win.  It was Snaer’s 5th buzzer beater to win a game in the last 13 months (all ACC games).  fsu jumped out to a 13-0 lead in the game but gt battled back to take a 5-point 2nd half lead thanks to an 18-4 run before the noles battled back to win.
  • The Match-Up: Virginia Tech has owned the jackets in football and basketball since joining the league.  While the jackets are an improved team this year, they still can’t win on the road, and until they do, I’m picking against them.  Robert Carter can be a force at times inside but then gt forgets about him for a while.  Plus, I don’t see gt making 8 three-pointers in this game – they are the worst shooting team in the ACC from the field and deep, and aren’t much better from the line.  VT has a pretty good offense, gt has a really good defense.  VT has a horrible defense, and gt has an atrocious offense.  Whichever teams’ weakness steps up should win, and I think it will be the Hokies and their improved defense.
  • Stats to Watch: VT is 8-1 in ACC short-turnaround games, VT is 7-0 all time at home vs gt, and georgia tech has lost 11 straight ACC road games.

Note: Tech clinches a winning home record with just one more win in the Cassell this season.  Despite losing 4 of 5 at home, VT is 8-4 in the Cassell with 5 to play.  The Hokies have had just one home losing record in 51+ years in the Cassell.  That came in 2001 under ricky “program bomb” stokes, as Tech went 6-9 at home.

Preview-md gt VT

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Game Plus/Minus | md 94, VT 71


Here’s the plus/minus numbers from the last two VT games, the season numbers (including in wins and losses), and the average +/- per game.

Note that Raines had a strong showing against maryland.  He was only -6 in 25 minutes of action.  And while van Zegeren had 10 points and 5 rebounds, he also had a -23 in 26 minutes.  Brown was the worst of the bunch with a -30.

byu md Season Wins Losses Avg +/-
Player +/- +/- +/- 9 5 Per Game
Brown -13 -30 68 14.3 -12.2 4.9
Green -29 -20 65 16.4 -16.6 4.6
Wood DNP DNP 43 5.8 -1.5 4.3
Barksdale -11 DNP 51 9.4 -6.3 3.9
Eddie -32 -18 38 11.4 -13.0 2.7
Raines -22 -6 12 5.8 -10.6 0.9
van Zegeren -7 -23 -1 2.1 -8.4 -0.1
Johnston 6 -6 -9 0.6 -3.5 -0.8
Patrick 1 DNP -5 -1.5 0.5 -0.8
Donlon 1 DNP -7 -4.0 0.5 -1.8
Racer 1 DNP -18 -9.5 0.5 -3.0
Rankin -12 -3 -47 1.3 -11.2 -3.9
Beyer -13 -9 -43 2.2 -18.7 -4.8
TEAM -26 -23 29 13.3 -18.2 2.1

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Game Recap | maryland (1-0, 13-1) 94, Hokies (0-1, 9-5) 71


Boxscore

After starting the season 7-0, the Hokies are just 2-5 since and have lost their last three games in blowout fashion (first time in 75+ years VT has lost 3 in a row by 20+). Today, Virginia Tech lost on the road to the terps, 94-71, in their ACC opener.  The Hokies are now 1-8 all time in ACC openers, losers of 6 openers in a row.

Senior guard Erick Green returned to form, scoring a game-high 28 points, though, the terps head coach Mark Turgeon seemed content allowing Green his points because no one else on Tech’s team has been scoring lately.

Stop me if this sounds familiar: the Hokies gave up a three pointer to start the game and gave up 10 total for the game. The terps, as have so many teams this season against the Hokies, shot nearly 50 percent from behind the arc. maryland was 10 of 22.

Meanwhile, the Hokies continue to struggle shooting the ball from anywhere on the court. Tech was a paltry 21 percent from three (4 of 19), 37 percent from the field (25 of 67), and 70 percent (17 of 24) from the free throw line.

Cadarian Raines finally scored more points than he had fouls and had a game-high 13 rebonds, but both he and Joey Van Zegeren were in foul trouble. That led to walk-on Christian Beyer guarding maryland’s 7-1 center Alex Len during a crucial stretch in the second half. You could see James Johnson on the Hokies’ bench mouthing the words, “That’s not going to work.”

The Hokies trailed by 16 at the half and fell behind by 22 points early in the second half, but made a run to cut the lead to 11. The terps pulled away, though, and went on to win their 13th straight game, which is a school record.

All those high hopes Hokie fans had after wins over iowa and oklahoma state are gone. Virginia Tech is exactly who we thought they’d be – a team with one very good player, seven scholarship players and a bunch of walkons.

With the exception of Green, the Hokies seem to have lost all confidence in their abilities. Jarell Eddie has been inconsistent and is constantly frustrated with himself during games. Robert Brown’s shooting is way off. Hopefully they can get their confidence back, because then Brown and Eddie are on, the Hokies have a shot.

Niemo will likely chime in on this game. Once he sobers up. Our sources are reporting that Niemo was at the game. No word on whether he made it out alive or without being detained.

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Preview | VT (9-4) @ maryland (12-1) | Saturday at Noon | ACC Network and ESPN3


Spread: maryland by 11.5.

The Hokies open ACC play on Saturday with a 250 mile road trip (after back-to-back 2,500 mile road trips) to College Park, MD. Tech is just 1-7 in ACC openers, losers of five straight. And after being outscored 111-56 in consecutive halves against colorado state and byu, it’s looked like VT would struggle to beat maryland-eastern shore or maryland-baltimore county right now, let alone the 12-1 terps.

While Tech’s struggles are well documented and readily apparent to anyone that has seen their last six games (horrendous perimeter/help defense, poor rebounding, and 3-point shooting that’s been colder than a Colorado ski slope), let’s not anoint maryland the ACC champs just yet. Since playing an overrated kentucky team (#58 RPI) tough in their opener (and losing by just 3 points), maryland has faced just two other top 100 RPI teams — beating #62 george mason and #90 stony brook. They’ve faced just one other top 200 team, meaning 9 of their 12 wins are against teams with a RPI of 200+. They have not faced a team in the top 50 of the RPI (VT is 1-2 vs top 50 teams).

That said, maryland will present some serious challenges to the Hokies and have to be heavy favorites in this game:

  • Turgeon is a seriously good coach and has them a year ahead of schedule — by next year they’ll be one of the top five programs in the ACC, and likely top four, year in and year out.
  • Alex Len is 7’1″ and a good low post scorer and rebounder. Considering VT couldn’t stop 6’9″ Brandon Davies, that’s not a good omen.
  • maryland is VERY deep — they play 10 guys 10+ minutes per game, and no one averages more than 25 minutes per game. That allows them to pick up full court most of the game, forcing VT to use energy just to bring the ball up.
  • Logan Aronhalt has been insanely hot from deep. The albany transfer is nearing 200 made 3s for his career and is 24/43 (56%) on the season from deep. He is just 1/10 on 2-point shots. Let’s hope Tech guards him a little better than they did Mr. Haws, who dropped 42 on the Hokies. No one else shoots even 39% on 3s for maryland though Allen is a threat at 38%.
  • maryland shoots the ball very well. Four of their top six scorers shoot 55% or better from the field, and they shoot 50% as a team. That’s not good news for a struggling defense. The terps will attack the tin regularly and often. Tech must defend the post better, and will have to double Len. Will that lead to open looks for Aronhalt and others? We’ll see.

maryland has 46 fewer free throw attempts than the Hokies, surprising for a team that likes to go inside a lot.

The keys for the Hokies are:

  • Can they rotate on defense to avoid wide open looks
  • Can they make some 3s (Tech is now 11th in the ACC at 32% on 3-pointers)

Rebounding will be important, too, but let’s face it — if maryland doesn’t miss because they are as wide open as byu and colorado state were, it won’t matter. Tech also needs to find ways to get out and run to avoid facing Len (and his 2.3 blocks per game) in the paint. That might mean leaking out a guard or two on defense and hoping the bigs can get the boards. Risky, but possibly necessary.

*Note: I was dead wrong about VT going zone. They tried a 2-3 zone against byu and it failed as miserably as their man, double-the-post defense.

Preview - VT maryland

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Recap | maryland (3-3, 13-7) 73, VT (1-5, 12-9) 69


20120128-152758.jpg

Tell me if you’ve heard this one before… the Hokies got off to a painfully slow start and fell behind early, but played just-good-enough defense to keep it somewhat close. Then, in the second half, they more than doubled their first half scoring and made a game of it, but committed one-to-many turnovers and fouls to be able to pull off the road win.

Virginia Tech lost to the terps 73-69 after scoring just 19 first-half points. The terps’ Terrell Stoglin led all scores with a blistering 28 points. Erick Green paced the Hokies with 18. Victor Davila and Dorenzo Hudson both had 14 and Jarrell Eddie added 11 points.

Cadarian Raines made his first career start, but managed just 4 points. Dorian Finney-Smith continued to struggle in ACC play failing to get a field goal in yet another game. He scored one point and looked lost while taking some bad shots. He’s looking like a freshman, but I can’t imagine he’ll struggle this mightily for the entire season.

Freshmen Robert Brown and Marquis Rankin played pretty well… for the most part. Tech had cut the terps lead down to 5, 63-58 in the final minute and change, and forced maryland to take a bad three point attempt as the shot clock wound down. But Brown fouled Sean Mosley’s three point attempt with the shot clock at zero and Mosley made the Hokies pay by making all three free throws to put the terps’ lead back to 8.

Tech didn’t give up, though. The terps inexplicably seemed to just give the Hokies points in the final minute. Green had a pair of easy layups and fed a wide-open Davila for an easy dunk to keep the Hokies in the game.

Brown atoned, somewhat, for his egregious foul by burying a three pointer with :03.6 seconds left to cut the maryland lead to just two, 71-69. Tech immediately fouled Stoglin on the inbounds pass, but he made both free throws to put the game away.

The Hokies shot just 24 percent in the first half and as has been so often the case this season, it was their undoing. After managing just 19 points in the first 20 minutes, Tech dropped 50 on the terps in the second half.

Niemo can speak more intelligently to the Greenberg’s alternating between the zone and man-to-man defense, but whatever they were doing, it didn’t stop Stoglin. That kid was in the zone and made some crazy shots, even when he was well-guarded.

Look, this is a tough loss, and the first half was just plain awful, but I have to say that I’m somewhat encouraged by the play of Rankin and Brown.

Rankin had a key steal in the second half where he literally just took the ball away with both hands and immediately passed it a streaking Green for the easy bucket. A few plays later, Rankin drove the lane from the right and drew the double team and fed Raines for the bucket.

The one thing I haven’t seen much of from this team is a high level of intensity and emotion that we’ve seen from previous teams. They play hard and they didn’t quit today, but where’s the floor-slapping and chest bumping? This team is subdued and I think it drives the fans and even the coaches a little crazy.

Looking ahead is pretty gloomy. They have duke and clemson at home before hitting the road against the canes. Then back home to face the eagles, at fsu, home against ga tech and uva, at duke and clemson, and back home to wrap up the regular season against nc state. Ouch. I don’t know about you guys, but I don’t see many wins in there. Maybe bc and gt? I don’t see the hoos losing to us twice.

Tech returns home to take on the dookies next Thursday, Feb. 2, at 7 p.m.

Play by Play
accuracy not guaranteed

– Raines made his first career start –
5-0 maryland to start the game
Hokies missed first 2 shots
5-2 Green jumper off the screen
8-2 Mosely 3pter

Under 16 – 8-2

8-5 – Erick Green 3 ptr (all 5 points)
– Doe Doe missed badly –
11-5 – Mosley 3 ptr
11-6 – Doe Doe fouled, makes 1/2 FTs
13-6 – 2 MD FTs
– MD in man-to-man defense –
13-9 – Green with another 3ptr
16-9 – Howard 3ptr
16-11 – Zo jumper in the lane from Barksdale

Under 12 – 16-11

18-11 – 2 MD FTs
20-11 – inside post move
22-11 – stoglin driving bucket
24-11 – panky dunks
– 8-0 terps run –
24-13 – raines with the rebound and putback

Under 8 – 24-13

24-15 – Davila rejected, but gets rebound and puts it back up and in
– Jarrell Eddie picks up 2nd foul on Stoglin while attempting a 3 ptr –
25-15 – Stoglin makes 1/3 FTs
26-15 – Len makes 1/2 FTs
26-17 – Davila makes 2 FTs
– Davila nice move but blows the easy layup –
28-17 – Stoglin fast break off Green’s missed three

Under 4 – 28-17

28-19 – Jarrell Eddie makes 2 FTS
– Hokies missed 2-on-1 break layup –
30-19 – Len dunk
– Hokies shooting 25% –
32-19 – Stoglin hits a jumper
– Hokies have gone nearly 5 minutes without making a FG –
– Hudson misses front end of 1-and-1 –
– Stoglin fouls Rankin –
– Rankin misses front end of 1-and-1 –
– VT 2 of last 14 –
– VT shot 24 percent in the first half –

Halftime score – 32-19

– Hudson starts 2nd half, misses –
34-19 – Stoglin
34-21 – Davila one-handed dunk after Green misses a runner
– Davila misses hook –
– MD turnover, walk –
– Eddie misses –
– Hudson airballs a floater –
– Davila has hands of stone, couldn’t catch a cold –
– Green misses –
36-21 – Faust finishes fast break
36-24 – Hudson hits a three pointer
– MD turnover –

Under 16 – 36-24

36-27 – Hudson buries a three from the corner
– Hokies cut lead to single digits –
36-29 – Robert Brown with the steal and the dunk
– MD timeout, has four TOs in the 2nd half –
38-29 – Pageant scores
38-32 – Hudson with the hoops and the harm, converts the three-point play
– Hudson has 9 points in 2-1/2 minutes –
40-32 – Mosley scores for MD
40-34 – Davila works the low post and scores (8 points)
43-34 – Stoglin hits a three pointer
– Hokies turn it over –
46-34 – Stoglin hits another three pointer
46-37 – Eddie buries a three pointer (his first FG of the game)
48-37 – Mosley jumper
– Turnover by the Hokies –

Under 12 – 48-37

50-37 – MD two
50-40 – Eddie makes the layup and is fouled, makes the FT
50-42 – Rankin steals it, passes to Erick Green for the fast-break layup
– MD turnover, but VT can’t convert, Green missed —
51-42 – MD makes 1/2 FTs
– Green drive, feeds Eddie who is fouled going to the hoop –
51-44 – Eddie makes 2 FTs
54-44 – Stoglin hits contested 3 pointer
54-46 – Ranking drives, dishes to Raines down low for the layup
– Weiss picked up 2nd PF –

Under 8 – 54-46

– Stoglin throws it away –
– DFS walks —
56-46 – Pageant scores inside over Eddie
– Turnover by VT –
– VT fouls Stoglin hard, Eddie hurts his elbow, picks up 3rd PF –
58-46 – Stoglin makes 2 FTs
58-48 – Hudson misses, but Rankin skies for the one-handed putback
– Like what we’re seeing from Rankin –
60-48 – Pankey makes 2 FTs
– Eddie fakes a three, passes inside the Davila who is fouled –
60-50 – Davila makes 2 FTs (10 points for VD)
– Green taking some quick, bad shots –
– Rankin foul on the Green miss –

Under 4 – 60-50

60-52 – Hudson makes 2 FTs
– Hudson gets stuffed on a layup –
60-53 – Hudson makes 1/2 FTs after technical foul against MD’s Mosley
60-55 – Green does right down the lane for easy bucket
63-55 – Stoglin step back 3 pointer (has four so far)
– Faust misses front end of a 1-and-1, Hokies get rebound –
63-57 – Green feeds Davila for the layup (Davila has 12)
– Hudson gets called for a blocking foul, but it looked like a charge –
– Faust misses front end of 1-and-1, Mosley gets the rebound, but called for off foul –
63-58 – Eddies makes 1/2 FTs (has 11 points)
– Jump ball, :03 left on shot clock –
– Brown commits foul on a 3 point attempt –
66-58 – Mosley hits all three FTs
– Stoglin commits offensive foul –
66-60 – Green easy layup
– Brown foul on inbound pass –
– terps miss both FTs –
66-62 – Green with another easy layup (:26 left)
68-62 – Mosley makes 2 FTs
68-64 – Green feeds Davila for the dunk (Davila has 14)
69-64 – Stoglin hits 1/2 FTs (:17 left)
69-66 – Green with a tough layup
71-66 – Howard makes 2 FTs (:10 left)
– Timeout maryland –
71-69 – Brown hits a three pointer (:03.6 left)
73-69 – Stoglin makes 2 FTs

Final Score: terps 73, Hokies 69

Posted in 2011-12 Season, Game RecapsComments (12)

Preview | VT (1-4, 12-8) @ maryland (2-3, 12-7) | Sat., 2:30 PM | ACC Network


The Hokies head to the Communist Center on Saturday to take on the maryland terrapins.  This marks the fourth straight weekend Tech has been on the road to open ACC play (total BS… that would never happen to unc or duke).  We’ll see if the Hokies can build off of their road win Sunday at uva and get the ball rolling as they close out the season with 11 straight ACC games.  And the Hokies are getting the terps at the right time — Wednesday night maryland lost to their big rival, duke (as if duke cares about them), while naming the court for former coach Gary Williams.  They had a packed house and shot their wad.  They will not have a packed house, or that level of energy, on Saturday after dropping their third straight game.

But there’s no reason to fear these turtles, their talent has dropped off quite a bit.  That said, the Hokies cannot take anyone for granted, and maryland has exceeded my expectations, largely due to new Head Coach Mark Turgeon.  Turgeon is really solid — he was 20+ games all four years he was at texas a&m before this, and won 20+ three of the final four years he was at wichita state before that.  He led the aggies to the NCAA Tournament all four years in College Station.

maryland is led by sophomore guard Terell Stoglin, the ACC’s leading scorer at 20.9 ppg.  And there’s been no drop-off for him in ACC play, he’s averaging 20.4 ppg in their five ACC tilts.  Stoglin shredded the Tech defense in the meeting in Blacksburg last year, scoring 25 points on 7/12 FGs and 10/10 FTs.  He regularly blew by the Hokie defense who either had to grab and foul him, or let him go for layups.  Stoglin is more versatile this year, becoming a deadly 3-point shooter.  He’s shooting 40% from deep with 2.5 makes per game (2nd best in the ACC).

The terps recently added Alex Len, the 7’1″ Ukraine train.  He had to wait until the end of the semester to play but has averaged over 7 ppg since.  He missed the temple game and only played 12 minutes against duke on Wednesday, so we’ll see how hard and long he can go.  We all know how 7-footers give the Hokies fits, so this will be key.  Len is good in the post and has a solid midrange game.  He’ll drift out and shoot from midrange at times.  He’s hitting 62% of his FGs, so you know he’s got a nice stroke and has good post moves.

Other than that, the terps have no one else that concerns me.  Sean Mosley is a veteran who averages 10 ppg and 5 rpg, but doesn’t scare you.  He can be invisible for entire games.  He has improved his 3-point shooting and hits 42%, but doesn’t attempt a ton.

James Padgett would be a role player if they had more depth inside, but instead is forced to play a lot.  He averages 9 ppg and 6 rpg.

Pe’Shon Howard reminds me of a Terrell Bell — he’s out there for his defense.  But while Bell became a decent outside shooter, Howard hits just 24% from deep.

Nick Faust was their top recruit, but dude is struggling (I know we feel their pain).  He’s shooting just 32% from the field, 54% from the line, and 20% from behind the arc.

With all that, I’d say Turgeon has squeezed every drop from these guys to get to 12-7.  They are a middle of the pack ACC team at best, and Turgeon has them playing well.

For the Hokies, let’s hope Erick Green continues his dominance of the terps.  EG dropped 24 points on 12/16 shooting at maryland last year (he’s sort of from the area so no doubt gets hyped with the extra family and friends).  That helped EG snag ACC Player of the Week.  Green followed that act with 20 points in the game in Blacksburg.

Dorenzo Hudson has scored 42 points off the bench in three games, and he’ll need to give a similar spark Saturday.  It did not work well when Zo had to play the point Wednesday with Rankin out and Green in foul trouble, so let’s hope Marquis is back to spell Green at times and allow Hudson to work off the ball.

The big key is can Dorian Finney-Smith get going.  While he’s still working very hard, diving for loose balls as he did at the end of the uva game and getting steals as he did against byu, it seems like the other team has a power play when he’s on the offensive end.  Since the start of 2012, Doe Doe has made a field goal in just ONE game.  He was 4/9 against florida state, but 0/19 in the other 5 games.  He’s tallied just 11 points this calendar year.  The Hokies have to find a way to get him going.  The problem has been he hasn’t been able to get the offensive rebounds and put-backs he was getting earlier in the year against smaller post players, and he really only has one move to the basket… drive with his right hand straight at the baseline, get forced deep, and have to huck it to the left corner while falling out of bounds.  And his 3-point shot has disappeared.  We know he can do it, it is just about getting confidence.

Another key freshman, Robert Brown, is also hitting the wall it seems.  In 2012, he’s hit just 14/45 FGs (31%), 5/23 3s (22%), and most disappointing, he’s just 4/9 from the free throw line.

The great sign of late has been Jarell Eddie.  JE has 20 points and 24 rebounds in the last two games, including his first career double-double against byu (12/14).

HO-KEYS TO WINNING:

  • Suck the air out: Like I said, Wednesday was an emotional game for maryland, this won’t be.  If the Hokies can get up early like they did last year, they’ll take the crowd out of it… I’ll believe it when I see it as Tech has really struggled in the first half in every game this year on offense except for the unc game.
  • Stifle Stoglin: Stoglin is the only guy you really fear.  If Rankin is back, he can give you a few minutes on him.  But it is going to largely be up to Green, Brown, and Hudson to get out on him on the perimeter, and the other defenders to rotate and help.  He’s their scariest player so do what you can to limit him.
  • Push it real good: maryland is not a good defensive team.  They can be beaten in transition and they get lost on picks.  If Tech actually runs some picks, they will have guys open on backdoors or pick and rolls.  But we’ll see if VT does this, or just passes around the perimeter.  The Hokies also need to drive at the tin early.  They get teams in foul trouble and get to the line when they are aggressive.  Don’t settle for 3s.

THE SERIES:

  • All Time: maryland 27-10
  • At maryland: md 16-4
  • In ACC Play: VT 6-4
  • At maryland in ACC Play: maryland 3-2

VT swept the twerps last year:

STARTERS:

VIRGINIA TECH
Pos # Player Height Year PPG
PG 11 Green 6-3 Jr 15.8
SG 1 Brown 6-5 Fr 7.9
SF 31 Eddie 6-7 So 9.9
F 15 Finney-Smith 6-8 Fr 5.9
C 14 Davila 6-8 Sr 6.8
Bench 5 Hudson 6-5 Sr 11.8
maryland
Pos # Player Height Year PPG
G 14 Mosley 6-4 Sr 10.0
G 12 Stoglin 6-1 So 20.9
G 21 Howard 6-3 So 6.9
F 30 Pankey 6-9 Fr 5.6
F 35 Padgett 6-8 Jr 9.1
Bench 25 Len* 7-1 Fr 7.1

*Alex Len will start if he’s healthy.  He missed the temple game and only played 12 minutes against duke while working back from an ankle injury.  Len would start over Pankey if that’s the case.

maryland, like VT, has a highly touted freshman who is struggling.  Nick Faust is averaging 7.2 ppg, but hitting just 32% of his FGs, 20% of his 3s, and 54% of his FTs.

STATS:

Note: these stats are for ACC games ONLY (5 for both teams).

VT maryland
ACC RANKING IN PARENTHESIS
PPG 57.6 (11) 67.2 (6)
PPG vs 61.8 (2) 70.2 (11)
FT% 76% (3) 65% (10)
FG% 37% (12) 40% (9)
3-Pt% 33% (6) 36% (2)
Made 3s PG 6.0 (4) 5.6 (5)
FG% D 41% (3) 45% (12)
3-Pt% D 30% (4) 26% (2)
Blocks 3.0 (9) 4.0 (5)
Steals 6.0 (6) 3.4 (12)
TO Margin +4.0 (2) -0.4 (8)
Off Reb % 27% (11) 35% (4)
Def Reb % 61% (12) 66% (10)

What these stats tell me is maryland is awful at transition defense.  Teams shoot low 3-point % against them, but a very high percentage inside the arc.  That has to mean transition points, and poor post defense.  They also don’t have many steals which means they aren’t taking away what you want to do in the half court (not sure what that is for VT).

Neither team is very strong at rebounding, and if Len doesn’t play big minutes the terps don’t have a height advantage on VT.

Posted in 2011-12 Season, Game PreviewsComments (2)

Game Highlights | VT 91, maryland 83


Here are the video highlights from the Hokies big win over the terps in the Cassell Tuesday.  How sweep it was! Check out the recap.

Posted in 2010-11 Season, HighlightsComments (0)

Sweeping of the terps | Recap | Hokies (7-4, 17-7) 91, maryland (5-6, 16-10) 83


Box Score

Terrell Bell played the game of his career Tuesday night as the senior from Stone Mountain, Ga., helped lead the Hokies to a hard-fought, ugly win over the maryland terrapins, 91-83.

Bell was an incredible 5/5 from behind the arc and his 16 points set a personal best in ACC games and was one off of his career high of 17 against campbell earlier this season. Bell also had three steals, three assists and a huge block.

For the second straight game, all five Hokie starters scored in double figures. Sophomore Erick Green played another stellar game with 20 points on 7/15 shooting. He hit a pair of huge three pointers late in the second half to push the Hokies back in front by six points.

Meanwhile, senior Malcolm Delaney led the Hokies with 22 points, but 14 of those came from the free throw line, where he was perfect. Delaney was just 3/14 from the field, but was able to force enough fouls to make the terps pay.

Jeff Allen notched his sixth straight double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds, all despite playing in foul trouble for much of the game. Allen now has 13 double-doubles this season and 42 for his career.

The Big Donut picked up his second personal foul less than 10 minutes into the game and his third foul three minutes into the second half, but unlike the past, he continued to be aggressive and was key to the Hokies second-half run.

Victor Davila played one of the best game of his career. He had 14 points, four rebounds and three assists, despite being in foul trouble. His baby hook shot was on tonight and the junior was 7/9 from the field.

Tech got off to another hot start, taking an 20-10 lead. But, foul trouble to Allen and Davila forced the Hokies’ big men to pick and choose their battles more carefully and maryland took advantage with a 17-5 run to take its first lead of the game with 8:23 to play.

From there, it was a back-and-forth battle featuring three lead changes and two ties before the terps took a 44-41 lead into the break. The 44 points were the most the Hokies have allowed in a half this season, but Tech outscored the terps 50-39 in the second half.

The most shocking stat is the points off the bench. The terps got 38 from their bench while the Hokies managed just three – a pair of free throws from Tyrone Garland and one from Jarell Eddie. The two freshmen were a combined 0/5 from the field.

maryland’s largest lead of the game came in the opening seconds of the second half and the terps held a lead for eight minutes. But, the Hokies kept it close and back-to-back Jeff Allen buckets tied the game 61. Bell gave Tech the lead back with one of his five three-pointers and the Hokies were up 64-61.

The terps briefly retook the lead, but the Hokies and the raucaus, albeit it sparse Cassell Crowd held off late rallies to secure a key win.

The Hokies did an admirable job of containing maryland’s big man, Jordan Williams. Tech’s defense held the big man to just 16 points and nine rebounds. Coming into the game, he was averaging 17 and 11. The terps got a big game from Terrell Stoglin, who led all scorers with 25 points.

The win gives the Hokies command of fourth place in the ACC. Tech is back on the road for a Saturday triple revenge match in Charlottesville where the Hokies hope to avenge their early season home loss to the wahoos.

Posted in 2010-11 Season, Game Recaps, GamesComments (15)

Preview | maryland (5-5, 16-9) @ VT (6-4, 16-7) | Tuesday at 8 PM | ACC Network


Spread: VT by 4.

The Hokies can take command of fourth place in the ACC with a win Tuesday night against the maryland terrapins at the Cassell, and move to 7-4.  A loss, however, will throw the Hokies right back into a traffic jam for the final bye in the ACC Tournament.  A loss would drop VT into a fourth place tie with maryland, bc, and clemson at 6-5.  Yep, this is a big one.

Expect Gary Williams, one of the better coaches in the ACC, to make significant adjustments in this game.  The Hokies’ 2-3 zone really rattled the terps in the first contest.  maryland shot just 36% from the floor in that game and 6/20 (30%) from deep.  They committed 16 turnovers (4 steals by Erick Green).

Tech also limited maryland’s star, Jordan Williams.  He was probably the ACC Player of the Year going into that game, but was limited to 11 points and 11 rebounds.  That may sound pretty good but considering he’s scored 20+ ten times this year and grabbed 15 rebounds in five games, 11 and 11 is a good effort by Tech.

maryland is not a good shooting team, though.  In ACC games they are 11th in FT%, 5th in FG%, and 10th in 3-Pt%.   The reason they are so high overall in FG% is Williams.  Limit him and you are forcing the turtles into their shell.

The Cassell had better be rocking for this one (Seriously, students!  The student section was maybe 75% full at best for georgia tech.).  Before the Hokies head back to the road for games at uva and wake (and then that other game), Tech needs to send a message that they are a contender for the ACC title.

LAST MEETING:

Erick Green helped vault himself to ACC Player of the Week with his performance in this game.  He had 24 points on 12/16 shooting and added 4 steals, 2 assists, and a block.  His defense fueled the Hokies in transition.

SERIES:

  • All-time: maryland 27-9
  • In ACC play: VT 5-4
  • At the Cassell in ACC play: VT is 3-1 but lost at home in 2 OTs last year

STARTERS:

Position Virginia Tech maryland
Guard 11 Green – 6-4 1 Bowie – 6-2
Guard 23 Delaney – 6-3 21 Howard – 6-3
Wing/Guard 1 Bell – 6-7 14 Mosley – 6-4
Forward 0 Allen – 6-7 33 Gregory – 6-7
Forward/Center 14 Davila – 6-8 20 Williams – 6-10

The terps, as always, spread their minutes out a lot.  Jordan Williams is the only terp playing more than 28 mpg.  The bench goes three or four deep.  Tucker is the only player that produces much off the bench.

STATS:

(ACC Games Only) Virginia Tech maryland
PPG 71.8 71.4
Pts Against 64.6 68.7
FG % 46% 44%
3-Pt % 37% 33%
FT % 76% 66%
Leading (All Games)
Scorer Delaney – 18.3 Williams – 17.1
Rebounder Allen – 10.0 Williams – 11.8
Assists Delaney – 4.3 Bowie – 3.7
Steals Green – 1.9 Mosley – 1.2
Blocks Bell – 1.1 Gregory – 1.4

HO-KEYS TO WINNING:

  • You Can’t Stop Williams, You Can Only Hope to Contain Him: Jordan has 20 double-doubles on the year, including 13 in a row up until the uva game.  But VT held him to 11 points and 11 rebounds in the first meeting and won easily.  bc limited him to 12 points and 8 rebounds Saturday in an eagle win.  He is their true star and without him having big numbers, they will struggle to find production.  Davila did a great job in the post on him (even in the zone) in the first meeting and needs to react to whatever adjustments maryland makes to get him the ball more.
  • Limit the Others: Like I said, Jordan is going to stuff the stat sheet for the most part but the other guys can burn you, too.  Against uva when Williams had just 4 points and 6 rebounds, Adrian Bowie exploded for 22 points and Cliff Tucker had a key 13 during a big run and the terps won by 24.  Pe’Shon Howard hit 4/5 from 3-point range against bc to keep them in the game.  Expect maryland to have different wrinkles to get their shooters open looks from deep against the zone.  That said, they aren’t a great 3-point shooting team – they are 10th in ACC play in 3-Pt% and makes per game.
  • Pressure maryland’s Guards: maryland has two freshmen guards that play a lot in Stoglin and Howard who will make freshmen mistakes (bad passes).  Even Mosley, a junior will throw the ball away.  Those three guards combined for 9 turnovers in the first meeting, leading to a lot of transition points for the Hokies.  If Green and Delaney can create run-outs by getting their hands on passes, the Hokies can get easy buckets as they did in the first meeting.
  • Protect the Ball: maryland will press after almost every make or dead ball.  They’ll use a full court man, which is more about delaying you from getting in your offense and draining the shot clock, or they’ll go with a full court trap aimed at creating turnovers.  Both teams average around 14 turnovers per game, and cause around 17.  If Tech can avoid struggles with the press that will give them a big advantage and limit run-outs for the terps.  maryland has just one real threat – Williams.  The rest are just very good athletes who play hard.  Force them to beat you in the half court.
  • Big Donut – Lather, Rinse, Repeat: Jeff Allen has been a man-child of late.  He’s outplayed Jordan Williams of late and needs to keep that up.  He had never had more than 3 double-doubles in ACC play in a season before this year, but has notched 5 in a row and 6 overall in ACC games this year.  Jeff has averaged 25 points and 16.5 rebounds in his last two games.  The Big Donut has lived up to the big promise of late.
  • Take Care of Business: The Hokies had a chance to take command of 4th place at Boston, but laid an egg against the eagles.  Tech cannot come out flat in this game.  The Hokies need to treat this like a huge game, because it is.

Posted in 2010-11 Season, Game PreviewsComments (4)

Game Highlights | VT 74, maryland 57


Here are the highlights from maryland’s biggest loss ever at the communist center.

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Easy Being Green | Recap | VT (3-2, 12-5) 74, maryland (1-3, 11-7) 57


Tip-off from College Park, Maryland for the Hokies vs. terpsVirginia Tech blitzed the maryland terrapins in the opening minutes of Thursday night’s game in College Park to the tune of a 12-0 lead and never looked back, en route to a 74-57 win. It is the worst loss by maryland since they opened play in the Comcast Center in 2002.

The Hokies seemed as though they were trying to give it away in the second half, shades of the unc game in which Tech blew a 16-point lead. The terps cut the lead to single digits, but the Hokies were not to be denied this time.

With the win over the terrapins, the Hokies improved to 3-2 in ACC play and 12-5 overall, while maryland fell to a disappointing 1-3 in conference play and 11-7 overall.

Starting point guard Erick Green led the Hokies with a career-high 24 points on 12/16 shooting. The sophomore had an electrifying first half with 14 points on 7/10 shooting, powering the Hokies to a 40-29 halftime lead. Green also had four, count ‘em, FOUR steals and two assists, all in the first half.

Senior Malcolm Delaney played a whale of a game, too, with 19 points and seven assists. He was only 5/11 from the field, but hit 7/8 at the free throw line. Most impressive were his incredible passes to Victor Davila and Green down the stretch to put maryland away.

Tech’s man-to-man defense stymied maryland’s leading scorer, Jordan Williams, the entire game, holding him to just 11 points, well below his season average of 18.1.

With the terps keying on Delaney, Green made the most of his opportunities as it was clear the terps didn’t consider him a legit scoring threat. And the Hokies needed a big game from someone because Jeff Allen struggled with foul trouble the entire game.

The senior forward sat much of the first half with two fouls and needed only a couple of minutes to pick up his third in the second half. Allen finished with only seven points and committed four turnovers, but still managed 11 rebounds.

Davila scored 13 points, Manny Atkins had six off the bench and Terrell Bell had two points, seven rebounds, two assists and a block. His defense contribution doesn’t show up in the box score.

The terps’ cliff tucker single-handedly kept maryland in the game in the second half, scoring 11 straight maryland points, including a trio of three-pointers and a two-pointer to cut Tech’s lead to eight, but his team-high 13 points weren’t enough as Delaney and his laser-guided passes helped slam the door shut on the home team.

Tech returns to the Cassell Coliseum Saturday night for a home game against the Longwood Lancers. Tip-off is at 7 p.m.

Niemo’s Notes:

  • Delaney clearly reads TechHoops.com.  If he didn’t, he’d have made one more basket.   [sarcasm]  VT is now 11-1 when he scores 20 or less, and 1-4 when he scores 21+ (he had 19 tonight).
  • Cousy Winner: Through the first 8 games (VT 4-4), Delaney had 26 assists and 42 turnovers.   In the 8 since, he’s totaled 51 assists and 19 turnovers.
  • THE WINCHESTER RIFLE: Erick Green is averaging 14 ppg, 3 asp, and 3 steals per game since entering the starting lineup 9 games ago.  BTW: he has 9 total turnovers in those 9 games.
  • Delaney finished 2-1 at the communist center (not bad – they talked a lot of smack – even down 17 – trust me)
  • I would rather be VT than md (take that any way you want)
  • Jordan Williams extended his double-double streak to 12 straight games with 11 points and 11 rebounds, though he was a non-factor. Kinda like how Kevin Love extended his double-double streak against Blake Griffin and the Clippers on Wednesday night despite the fact the T’wolves lost by double digits to the Clippers.
  • How smart am I?  I said VT had to win the 3-point battle… they didn’t – maryland made 6 to VT’s 5 (though VT shot a slightly better percentage).  I said the Hokies had to win from the FT line… they didn’t – maryland made 2 more and shot a better percentage.  I said VT had to shut down maryland’s supporting cast because Jordan Williams was gonna get his… nope, Tech completely took Williams out of the game.  Both teams were just about even in turnovers as expected (VT 15, md 16).   VT did a good job on the boards (VT – 8 offensive rebounds to 9 for md though VT had many fewer opportunities).  This game simply came down to Tech made more shots than maryland (30/56 to 20/56).  maryland couldn’t exploit the man defense Tech opened the game with, and isn’t a good enough shooting team to beat the 2-3 zone the rest of the game, while Tech hit their jumpers and got easy layups.  Also, maryland’s press only caused 1 or 2 turnovers by my count.
  • VT is the 2nd best team in the ACC (more to come on that once I can type – darn you 4 Lokos!)

Posted in 2010-11 Season, Game Recaps, HomeComments (8)

Preview | VT (2-2, 11-5) @ maryland (1-2, 11-6) | Thursday at 9 PM | ESPN2


Spread: maryland by 5.5 (about what I thought it would be)

On Thursday, the Hokies kick off a three week stretch where they play four out of five ACC games on the road.  Tech must find a way to steal two of these four games, and defend the Cassell against miami, to stay in the ACC race.  But this game in College Park may be the toughest of the four, at least on paper.

Expect the terps to come out on Thursday with everything they have.  They are coming off a tough loss to #7 villanova.  maryland led the wildcats by 12 with less than 10 minutes to play, but a 19-0 villanova run sank the terps.  maryland will likely have bad intentions, as VT did after their blown lead at Chapel Hill.  Also, the terps are 1-2 in ACC play and cannot afford to fall to 0-2 at home.  That’s a sure recipe to playing on Thursday in the ACC Tournament.

Believe it or not, the Hokies lead the ACC in scoring margin in ACC play through Monday’s action.  Tech is +35 after four ACC games (+8.8 per game).  The Hokies have two double digit ACC wins, and lost both games by just three.  But that’s meaningless since VT has a 2-2 ACC record and sit in the middle of the pack.  Flip the uva or unc game, and Tech is in first.  But close clearly doesn’t count here.  It’s all about the W’s.

Expect Malcolm Delaney to have a big game.  The Baltimore native has always had a chip on his shoulder since the home state terps didn’t recruit him very hard.  He’ll likely have a lot of friends and family in attendance and will want to bury the terps in his last trip to maryland.  But if statistics are fortune tellers, Hokie fans should hope he scored 20 points or less.  Tech is 10-1 when Delaney scores 20 or less, but just 1-4 when he eclipses the 20 point mark.

Jeff Allen, another local boy from Washington, D.C., will be vital for the Hokies inside.  In Tech’s last game at maryland, Jeff flicked off the fans on the way to the bench in VT’s 83-73 loss and was suspended for the next game (ended up being at uva, which has been another house of horrors for him).  Stay classy, Jeff.  Let’s go out in style.

SERIES:

The home teams have controlled this series since VT joined the ACC.  Each team is 3-1 on their respective home floor.  Tech’s lone win in College Park came in 2007-08 when Delaney, Allen, and Bell were freshmen (VT 69, md 65 – Recap).  That was the infamous Dorenzo Hudson puke on the court game where Tech overcame an early 10-0 deficit.  maryland’s only win in the Cassell came last year, a 104-100 double overtime win in a game that started several hours late because a beer truck ran over a water main (you can’t make stuff like that up.

maryland will head to Blacksburg on February 15th.

  • All-time: maryland 27-8
  • In ACC play: 4-4 (md 3-1 in ACC play)
  • Streak: maryland – 2 (VT had won 3 in a row before that)

Blast from the Past – Recap of The Weekend Warrior’s trip to the communist center in 2008

STARTERS:

Position Virginia Tech maryland
Guard 11 Green – 6-4 1 Bowie – 6-2
Guard 23 Delaney – 6-3 12 Stoglin – 6-1
Wing/Guard 1 Bell – 6-7 14 Mosley – 6-4
Forward 0 Allen – 6-7 33 Gregory – 6-7
Forward/Center 14 Davila – 6-8 20 Williams – 6-10

Much like VT, maryland has had the same four starters all season.  The only change has been on the wing.  Senior wing man Cliff Tucker, the terps’ second leading scorer, started the first 11 games.  After their loss to boston college, they have gone with a smaller, three guard lineup.  Freshman Terrell Stoglin has started the last four games, but this has not impacted Tucker’s minutes at all, he still plays 25-29 minutes per game.

The terps, as always, spread their minutes out a lot.  Jordan Williams is the only terp playing more than 27 mpg.  The bench goes three or four deep.  Tucker is the only player that produces much off the bench.

STATS:

  Virginia Tech maryland
PPG 71.7 78.4
Pts Against 60.3 62.9
FG % 47% 48%
3-Pt % 34% 33%
FT % 71% 63%
Leading …    
Scorer Delaney – 18.6 Williams – 18.1
Rebounder Allen – 9.3 Williams – 12.2
Assists Delaney – 4.4 Bowie – 3.8
Steals Green – 2.0 Tucker/Mosley – 1.2
Blocks Bell – 1.3 Gregory – 1.8

INSIDE THE turtle’s shell:

If you haven’t seen the terps play this year, you’ll barely recognize them.  Gone are three major starters from the maryland team that went 13-3 last year and tied duke for the regular season title.  Gone are ACC Player of the Year Greasy Face-quez (a Niemo arm-curl victim), guard Erick Hayes, and forward Landon Milbourne.  Those three represented their top three scorers a year ago.

While maryland is certainly rebuilding this year, they are still pretty darn good.  They have six losses but those defeat include current #4 duke, #5 pittsburgh, #7 villanova, and #23 illinois.  They also lost to temple, who was ranked much of the year to date, and boston college.

If you look at ACC statistics, you’d think the terps should be near the top of the standings.  Check out where maryland ranks in the ACC in some key stats (these are for all games, not just ACC contests):

  • #2 in scoring offense
  • #5 in scoring defense
  • #2 in FG%
  • #2 in FG% defense
  • #1 in the nation in defensive efficiency (points allowed per possession)
  • #1 in offensive rebounds
  • #3 in blocks
  • #1 in assists
  • #5 in steals
  • #4 in turnover margin

maryland also boasts the ACC’s player of the midseason, sophomore big man Jordan Williams:

  • #4 in scoring
  • #1 in rebounds (by 2.6 per game)
  • #1 in FG%
  • 15 double-doubles in 17 games, including 11 in a row!

So how have they lost six games and fallen to 1-2 in the ACC?  Easy, they don’t shoot three-pointers or free throws well at all.  The terps are dead last in threes made per game at 4.2 (they shoot 33% – second worst in the league) and dead last in free throw percentage at 63% (313th in the nation of 345 teams).

In maryland’s six losses, they have gotten absolutely nothing from behind the arc.  They are 18/84 (21%) in those six defeats.  That’s an average of just three makes per game.

Free throws are Williams’s Achilles heel – he hits just 52% (he hits 56% of his field goals).  There is the dilemma – you don’t want to give Jordan an easy bucket, especially since he’s likely just going to make 1/2 from the line, but Tech cannot afford to foul inside with their lack of depth.  It will be up to guards to waste fouls inside… and if all else fails, send in the goon!  (Prince Parker)

HO-KEYS TO WINNING:

  • You Can’t Stop Williams, You Can Only Hope to Contain Him: Jordan is going to get his.  He’s averaging 25 ppg and 13 rebounds in their last three losses (the Malcolm Delaney Jinx?).  The key is to not let him impact the Hokies game, too.  In other words, if Tech becomes so worried about him and he draws a lot of fouls, that’s going to really limit what Tech can do if Allen, Bell, and/or Davila are on the bench.  At least make him work for his buckets.  I really like Davila’s post-up defense in man-to-man, but assuming Tech goes zone a lot since maryland isn’t an outside shooting team, VT will really have to put a body on Williams to keep him off the glass and watch the back door feeds or alley-oops.
  • Limit the Others: Like I said, Jordan is going to stuff the stat sheet.  Tech needs to limit the rest of the terps.  Cliff Tucker is averaging just 6 ppg in their last four losses and is 10/34 from the field.  Terrell Stoglin, the new starter at guard, is just 5/28 from the field in the last three games and has just 11 points total (he’s averaging 9.7 ppg on the season).
  • Dominate Behind the Arc: The terps have an advantage inside with Williams and should get more offensive rebounds as a result.   Both teams are similar in terms of turnovers and turnover margin, so VT can’t expect to make up points there.  So Tech has to get more points out of the possessions they have.  The Hokies have been red hot from three-point range in the last week.  Tech was 19/40 from three-point range against unc and wake.  Tech needs to win the three-point battle to make up for their deficiencies on the boards.  If maryland is hot from deep, or the Hokies aren’t making any, it will be tough for VT to win.
  • Protect the Ball: maryland will press after almost every make or dead ball.  They’ll use a full court man, which is more about delaying you from getting in your offense and draining the shot clock, or they’ll go with a full court trap aimed at creating turnovers.  Both teams average around 14 turnovers per game, and cause around 17.  If Tech can avoid struggles with the press that will give them a big advantage and limit run-outs for the terps.  maryland has just one real threat – Williams.  The rest are just very good athletes who play hard.  Force them to beat you in the half court.
  • Make Your Luck: The first four things above VT can help control.  This one they only partly can – win the free throw battle.  While there is no such thing as ‘free throw defense’, Tech’s opponents have combined to shoot just 60% from the line on the season.  That’s the second lowest percentage in the nation.  Considering VT is facing the 313th ‘best’ free throw shooting team in the nation Thursday, you don’t expect the terps to shoot their lights out from the line.  But the Hokies must capitalize on this.  While unc was an abysmal 7/17 from the line, VT was just 8/15 (plus two missed front ends of one-and-ones).  Think that impacted the outcome?  The Hokies knock’em down from the charity stripe, and hope the terps are their usual cold selves.
  • Urgency: maryland will have an urgency on Thursday.  They don’t want to fall to 1-3 in the ACC, or 0-2 at home.  Tech needs that same urgency and pay maryland back for that 104-100 2 OT loss at the Cassell last year.  A win would give the Hokies another RPI top 100 win (although maryland is just #91).  And it would put VT in the upper half of the league with a much needed road win.  The Hokies need the same fever to win this game the terps will have.

Look out, terps, The Weekend Warrior, Niemo, and DuffHokie are headed to College Park Thursday!

Note: Due to the fact I hate maryland and everything about them, I’m not posting boring facts other than that my Mom (and Malcolm Delaney) are from the old line state.

Posted in 2010-11 Season, Game PreviewsComments (9)

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