Virginia Tech was beaten in every phase of the game by NC State on Sunday, falling 70-58 in Blacksburg. Tech finished the regular season 15-16, with a 4-12 mark in the ACC. NC State is 20-11 overall, and they have a 9-7 record in league play.
Cadarian Raines finished with 15 points, 5 rebounds and two steals, while Dorian Finney-Smith had 14 points and eight rebounds. Erick Green had 12 points for the Hokies, but most of them came late when the game was already decided. He scored Tech’s final six points of the game, but the Wolfpack already had a big lead before the short burst.
NC State shot 51.1% from the field. It was the third time in the last five games that an opponent has shot more than 50% against the Hokies. Virginia Tech shot just 36.7% from the field, only 25% from three-point range and only 50% from the free throw line. Even the normally reliable Dorenzo Hudson was just 1-of-4 from the charity stripe on his Senior Night.
Tech only turned the ball over seven times, but they were all critical turnovers. NC State picked off five bad passes by the Hokies and took them all the way coast to coast for layups, creating 10 easy points for the Wolfpack. Marquis Rankin in particular struggled, committing five of Virginia Tech’s seven turnovers.
The Hokies were also outrebounded 40-25 by NC State, and the Wolfpack scored 36 points in the paint. Tech had trouble yet again keeping their opponents out of the lane, despite using a mixture of man-to-man and 2-3 zone, as well as a 1-3-1 zone mixed in on one possession.
NC State controlled the game from start to finish, but the Hokies stayed within striking distance most of the time. A layup by Erick Green made the score 51-47 Wolfpack with 10:31 remaining, and it seemed as if Tech was finally starting to get the momentum. However, that didn’t turn out to be the case, as NC State immediately went on an 11-0 run over the next five minutes to take complete control of the game. At that point, the Hokies had basically no chance of a comeback.
Virginia Tech is the #10 seed in the 2012 ACC Tournament in Atlanta. The Hokies will take on #7 seed Clemson on Thursday night at 7pm from Philips Arena. If they win, they’ll take on #2 seed Duke on Friday.