Virginia Tech beat Appalachian State 87-76 on Friday afternoon, and improved to 5-0 on the year. It is the first 5-0 start in school history since the 1984-85 season.
It certainly wasn’t easy, as the Mountaineers played the Hokies tough throughout nearly the entire game. However, Tech made a defensive adjustment with about 10 minutes remaining in the game, and that propelled them to a 13-2 run and a 73-60 lead with 4:52 remaining. From there, they coasted to the win.
“We were going under the ball screens, and they were able to shoot over us,” Jarell Eddie said after the game. “Then we made the adjustment to trap off the ball screens, and we were able to cause some turnovers and get going.”
Eddie had another great shooting night for the Hokies. He finished with 23 point, and he was 7-of-9 from the field, 4-of-5 from three-point range, and 5-of-6 from the free throw line. On Monday night against UNC-Greensboro, he had 28 points and made all five of his outside jumpers. Against Appalachian State, he had a baseline drive for a dunk, and also a running floater in the lane as he continues to expand his offensive game.
“I’m just shooting the ball real well right now,” Eddie said. “My teammates are finding me in open spots.”
Erick Green paced the Hokies with 27 points, setting his career high for the second consecutive game. Green was also 11-of-11 from the free throw line after going 16-of-16 on Monday night. He missed all five of his three-point attempts, but he was 8-of-16 from the field.
Sporting his new flat top haircut for the second game in a row, freshman forward Marshall Wood scored a career-high 13 points, and also pulled down eight rebounds.
“It was kind of a team thing,” Wood said regarding the new flat top. “They told me I had to go and get a flat top, so I got one. I feel like Will Smith.”
On his offensive performance, Wood noted that he’s feeling more comfortable.
“I’m definitely getting a lot more comfortable. Coming in as a freshman, it’s kind of hard to figure out your niche. My teammates have a lot of trust in me, so I’m feeling pretty good out there.”
C.J. Barksdale also had 10 points and pulled down seven boards for the Hokies.
Tech’s weakness again was defense and rebounding. They were outrebounded by the smaller Mountaineers 35-27. Cadarian Raines was taken completey out of the game, finishing with just three points and two rebounds, all of which came in the second half.
Competition will take a step up next week, with 5-1 Iowa and #20 Oklahoma State coming to town. Iowa will play in Cassell Coliseum on Tuesday night at 7:15pm. The game will be televised nationally by ESPNU.