2007-08 Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech vs. UNC-Greensboro

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The Hokies will play their second game of a three-game home stand when they
host UNC-Greensboro in Cassell Coliseum on Tuesday night. UNC-Greensboro has
already claimed one ACC scalp so far in this young season, and they’ll be
looking for their second on Tuesday.

The Spartans are a similar team to UNC-Asheville, whom the Hokies defeated
65-51 on Saturday night. However, UNC-Greensboro’s top player is post-man Kyle
Hines, who is one of the best small-conference players in America.


UNC-Greensboro Starting Lineup

Position

Name

Height

Weight

Year

PPG

RPG

APG

G

Dwayne Johnson

5-9

180

Sr.

6.3

2.5

4.8

G

Mikko Koivisto

6-4

195

So.

14.8

2.4

1.8

G

Kevin Oleksiak

6-4

195

Sr.

7.4

1.8

1.4

F

Ben Stywall

6-5

210

So.

8.6

8.4

2.2

F

Kyle Hines

6-6

230

Sr.

17.8

8.8

1.6

Kyle Hines is an outstanding inside player. He doesn’t have the ideal size that
you’d like from your main inside guy, but nevertheless, he finds a way to get it
done. He scored 25 points on a much bigger Georgia Tech team earlier in the
season. The Spartans knocked off the Yellow Jackets 83-74 in Atlanta.

The Hokies faced UNC-Greensboro last year, and though Tech won 74-51, Hines
was very good for the Spartans. He scored 21 points in that game, on 8-of-15
shooting. The rest of the team was just 8-of-40 from the field against VT, and
shot just 18.2% from three point range.

Hines owns the nation’s longest double-figure scoring streak. He has scored
in double figures in his last 55 games.

Virginia Tech will have to concentrate on their perimeter defense again in
this game. UNC-Greensboro is a very strong three-point shooting team. They are
shooting 39.7% as a team from the outside, although three players take the
majority of their three-pointers.


UNC-Greensboro’s Top 3-Point
Shooters

Name

Made

Att.

Percentage

Mikko Koivisto

17

32

53.1%

Kendall Toney

14

29

48.3%

Kevin Oleksiak

7

16

43.8%

Totals

38

77

49.3%

That’s a pretty impressive mark from downtown. Those three players have combined
for 77 of the Spartans’ 116 three-point attempts this year.

Toney comes off the bench to play 20.6 minutes per game. His shooting really
gives UNC-Greensboro a spark off the bench, and he is averaging 9.6 points per
game, which ranks third on the team.

From
a three-point shooting standpoint, UNC-Greensboro is similar to UNC-Asheville.
However, unlike the UNC-A Bulldogs, the UNC-G Spartans don’t take great care of
the basketball. They have turned the ball over 89 times in five games, an
average of 17.8 per game. Jamon Gordon and Zabian Dowdell would have taken
advantage of that in a big way. It remains to be seen whether or not Tech’s
young team can do so.

The best matchup in this game should be Kyle Hines vs. Virginia Tech’s Jeff
Allen. Allen is coming off an off-night against UNC-Asheville. He had just two
points and two rebounds after getting in early foul trouble. Allen and the rest
of the Hokies can’t be afraid to make Hines earn his points at the free throw
line. He is just 56.7% from the line on the season.

Allen, or whoever is defending Hines, has to push him out of scoring
position. He can’t be allowed to catch the ball in the low block in position to
score.

The Hokies hold a size and athletic advantage over UNC-Greensboro. The
Spartans have just one guy in their playing rotation that goes over 6-6. That is
6-7 freshman Darrius Sellers, and he plays less than eight minutes per game.

Virginia Tech has more talent, but the Spartans start three seniors, and
they’ve already proven they can defeat an ACC team. It should be a good game
from the Cassell.

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