2007-08 Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech at Richmond

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Virginia Tech will look to win their third consecutive game when they take
on Richmond in the Robins Center on Thursday evening. The Hokies are coming
off wins over Hofstra and St. John’s in the Aeropostale Holiday Festival in
Madison Square Garden over the weekend. Tech is 8-5, and they still have a
chance to reach 10 wins before facing the meat of their conference schedule,
but they must defeat the Spiders to reach that goal.

Richmond is 6-6 on the year, with a number of close wins and losses. They
play at a very slow offensive pace, which keeps the games close. The Spiders
aren’t an athletic team, and that style of play gives them a chance to
compete. They are averaging just 60.3 points per game on the season, while
allowing just 63.7 points per game.

In their most recent game against VMI, the Spiders held the nation’s
highest-scoring team to just 69 points. Their best win of the year was a 55-49
victory over the same Old Dominion team that beat Virginia Tech 72-69.


Richmond
Probable Starters

Position

Name

Height

Weight

Year

Points

Rebounds

Assists

G

Kevin Anderson

5-11

165

Fr.

8.5

2.1

33

G

David Gonsalves

6-4

200

So.

10.3

2.8

24

F

Ryan Butler

6-6

200

So.

6

2.9

36

F

Gaston Moliva

6-7

230

Sr.

4

3.4

0

C

Dan Geriot

6-9

235

So.

13.5

5.3

25

Richmond’s most dangerous player is forward/center Dan Geriot (6-9, 235,
So.), who leads the team in scoring and rebounding. He averages 13.5 points
and 5.3 rebounds per game. He’s not a bruiser on the inside, but he’s a
typical skilled mid-major inside player. He will step out and take the open
three-pointer, knocking down 13-of-33 shots from the outside this season.

Although Richmond plays at a slow offensive pace, they rely on the outside
shot. They are 84-of-248 from the outside this year, shooting at a 33.7% clip.
Seven different players have attempted at least 22 three-pointers.

Their top perimeter player is guard David Gonsalves (6-4, 200, So.).
Gonsalves is Richmond’s top three-point threat. He’s 22-of-51 from the
outside this year, a 43.1% mark. 66 of his 123 points have come from behind
the arc.

Geriot and Gonsalves are two of three Richmond players to start all 12
games this year. The third is wing Ryan Butler (6-6, 200, So.). Butler is a
skilled point forward who leads the team with 36 assists. He averages six
points per game, and he’s a competent three-point shooter at 34.1%.

Although he’s only started four games, Kevin Anderson (5-11, 165, Fr.) is
Richmond’s primary point guard. He averages 31.3 minutes per game, which is
second on the team. He is second on the team with 33 assists. He averages 8.5
points per game, which is third on the team.

A good defensive team, Richmond has forced 208 turnovers through 12 games.
Virginia Tech most do a good job of protecting the basketball and maximizing
their offensive opportunities. However, the Spiders have also committed 192
turnovers of their own, compared to just 156 assists.

Virginia Tech has a major advantage on the boards. Richmond averages just
29.5 rebounds per game, one of the few teams you’ll see that average less
than 30 per game. They are being out-rebounded by an average of six boards per
game. Meanwhile, the Hokies have a +4.6 boards per game advantage
this year.

In a low-scoring affairs such as this one is likely to be, turnover margin
and second chance points are critical. The Hokies should have a big advantage
in second chance points, and Tech stands at least a decent chance to win the
turnover battle as well.

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