Virginia Tech rallied from a four-point deficit with 6:10 to play by going on a 14-1 run and beat UNC-Greensboro 96-87 in the Greensboro Coliseum on Monday night. The Hokies are now 4-0 for the first time since the 2004-05 season.
Jarell Eddie lit up the Spartans all night, scoring a career-high 28 points. Eddie was 7-of-9 from the field, a perfect 5-of-5 from three-point range, and 9-of-10 from the charity stripe. He also had five rebounds and three blocks in 34 minutes. Eddie made five free throws in a 33 second span in the final minutes to help ice the game.
Erick Green didn’t have his best shooting night, going only 4-of-15 from the field. However, he was a perfect 16-of-16 from the free throw line, and made eight free throws in the final 2:01 to finish with 26 points. He put the team on his back down the stretch. As a team, Tech was 34-of-42 from the free throw line.
The Hokies were 24-of-53 (45.3%) from the field, and an impressive 14-of-22 (63.6%) from three-point range. Eddie was perfect from the outside, Will Johnston made three outside jumpers in the first seven minutes of the game to finish with nine points, and Robert Brown was 3-of-5 from behind the arc. Brown finished with 10 points.
Tech didn’t play a good game defensively. The Hokies led by as many as 14 points in the first half, but they were never able to put the Spartans away because they couldn’t get stops. They had trouble stopping the ball, and their rotation on the inside was slow. However, they picked up the intensity down the stretch. Between the 6:10 mark and the 1:14 mark, UNC-Greensboro didn’t make a single field goal and managed just one free throw. The Hokies were more active with their hands, they kept the ball handler in front of them, and they rotated faster. That late defensive effort enabled them to pick up a key road win.
The Hokies will return to action on Friday afternoon when they host Appalachian State. The Mountaineers have been struggling defensively, allowing 86 points to High Point and 101 points to Campbell. If Tech wins on Friday, it will be their first 5-0 start since the 1984-85 season. Tipoff is scheduled for 2pm, and the game will be available online on ESPN3.