Virginia Tech was defeated by Boston College 66-59 in Cassell Coliseum on Monday night, dropping their record to 10-20 overall and 2-15 in the ACC. The Eagles improved to 11-18 overall, and 3-14 in conference play.
If I had told you that Boston College would make only three field goals over the last 19 minutes of the game, the Hokies would outrebound the Eagles by two, Tech would only commit nine turnovers and Adam Smith would score 22 points, what would your game prediction have been? I would have picked a win without even thinking about it, and you probably would have, too. However, that isn’t what happened.
This was a tale of two games. The Hokies played poorly for the first 23 minutes before finally waking up at approximately the 17 minute mark, but it wasn’t enough. A quick glance at the box score says a lot. Here are some notes that sum up the game:
1: BC made 17 field goals in the first half. They made just five field goals in the second half, and only three field goals over the final 19 minutes of the game. At the 19 minute mark of the second half, they led 46-28, Buzz Williams cleared his bench to get some energy, and the Hokies fell behind 52-30 before rallying to cut the lead to six points. Unfortunately, Tech couldn’t overcome a poor defensive first half that saw BC shoot 63% from the field.
2: The fact that the Eagles only made five field goals in the second half and still shot 52.4% for the game shows exactly how bad Tech’s defense was in the first half.
3: Adam Smith scored 22 points, but no other Hokie scored more than eight.
4: Tech’s two scholarship post players, Satchel Pierce and Shane Henry, combined for two rebounds in 17 minutes. Despite that, the Hokies outrebounded BC 29-27. It was the second straight game Tech has outrebounded an ACC opponent after failing to do so in their first 15 league games. However, it wasn’t enough to get the win.
5: Dimitri Batten, a Newport News native who transferred from ODU to Boston College, had a career-high 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting. Coming into the game, he was averaging 6.7 points while shooting 43% from the field and 32.3% from three-point range.
BC had the experience advantage. The Eagles started two grad students, a senior and two other juniors, and they also bring a senior off the bench. However, the Hokies had the overall talent advantage, which showed once they began to play with energy. Nevertheless, BC’s 23 minutes of good basketball was better than Tech’s 17.
“No energy, no fight, non-competitive,” Buzz Williams said of his team following the game.
Despite the poor start, the Hokies cut the lead to 60-54 on an Adam Smith three-pointer with 2:13 remaining. Unfortunately, that was as close as they got.
Jalen Hudson, who scored 23 points against Duke and then went scoreless against UVA, had one point and was 0-of-4 from the field. Justin Bibbs had five points and was 2-of-6 shooting.
Virginia Tech returns to action this Saturday at home for their final regular season game of the year against Miami. Tipoff is scheduled for noon, and the game will be televised by RSN. Check your local listings.