Virginia Tech Falls At Georgia Tech, 77-70

Justyn Mutts and the Hokies only shot 41% on Wednesday in Atlanta in the loss to Georgia Tech. (Virginia Tech athletics)

Georgia Tech controlled the tempo from the get-go on Wednesday night in Atlanta and Virginia Tech couldn’t rally after trailing by as many as 16 points, losing 77-70. The loss essentially ends the Hokies’ hopes of an at-large bid for the NCAA tournament.

Virginia Tech (15-11, 5-10 ACC) came out firing early, led by Grant Basile. The big man, who finished with a game-high 21 points that tied GT’s Dallan Coleman, had his eighth 20-point game of the year on the heels of back-to-back 33-point performances. 13 of his points came in the first half.

But after Basile’s early burst, the Hokies struggled. They shot 41% from the floor for the game (30-of-73) and were poor from three (6-of-23, 26%), and despite grabbing 15 offensive rebounds, they scored just 14 second chance points. In fact, they took 15 more shots than the Yellow Jackets (10-16, 3-13 ACC) but only made four more.

Josh Pastner and Georgia Tech switched defenses often, keeping the Hokies on their toes. They used man-to-man, a 1-3-1 zone, a 2-3 zone and even a triangle-and-two. And while VT got some good looks, it couldn’t finish around the rim; it made just 13 of its 25 layups.

Meanwhile, GT had an explosive evening from behind the arc. The Yellow Jackets were 11-of-22 (50%) from deep, knocking down eight in the first half to enter intermission with a 10-point lead, 41-31. In the last three games, Virginia Tech has allowed its opponents to shoot 36-of-76 (47.4%) from distance.

All five starters scored in double figures for GT, led by Coleman. Four of those players nailed multiple 3-pointers, too. Miles Kelly finished with 15 points and six rebounds (3-of-6 3FG), Lance Terry added 14 (2-of-5 3FG) and Kyle Sturdivant (3-of-5 3FG) and Ja’von Franklin each contributed 10. Franklin finished with a double-double, too, grabbing 10 rebounds in the process. He also created havoc on the defensive end, blocking five shots.

Justyn Mutts had a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds, and he was close to a triple-double with nine assists. Sean Pedulla and Hunter Cattoor scored 11 points each while Lynn Kidd had six off the bench.

The Hokies could not sustain a rhythm against the Yellow Jackets on either end. Though they had a 13-2 run over a three-minute span in the second half while trailing by 16, GT quickly responded with five points, pushing the lead back to 10.

The largest difference was towards the end of the first half when the Hokies missed six shots in a row over a stretch of two-and-a-half minutes and Georgia Tech ripped off a 7-0 run, taking the lead from three points to 10.

VT also didn’t get to the free throw line. It only shot eight free throws while GT attempted 26, making just 14 (54%). The rebounding battle was close, 41-40 in GT’s favor, and VT only turned the ball over 10 times. But it was a sloppy game from start to finish, which played into the Yellow Jackets’ hands.

The loss was the eighth on the road this year for Virginia Tech. Despite the success at home, the program is 1-8 away from the friendly confines of Cassell Coliseum. The Hokies return to Blacksburg on Saturday to host league-leaders Pitt (5 p.m. ET, ACC Network).

Box Score: Link 

25 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. I said all along, Buzz was a hell of a coach. Winning again at A+M.
    We rarely hire big names
    We hire people cause they ” want to be here”
    Big names win, want to be here coaches stay for less and lose.

    1. I don’t understand the purpose of your comment. Are you saying CMY is not up to the task after bringing home an ACC Championship last year? Sounds like you are indulging your disposition to me.

  2. A fluke? Winning one game over a superior opponent can be a ‘fluke’. But four nights in a row (Clemson, Notre Dame, North Carolina, Duke) a fluke? Not at all likely!

  3. David does an excellent job @ TSL, and this abbreviated storyline is telling. David simply could not find much to write about that was positive, thus the brevity of the above update. Very very disappointing season, and a far cry from how this team played in pre ACC play. We switched over to the UT-Alabama game!!

  4. Really disappointing result last night. For all the talk of Pastner being a lower tier ACC coach, he sure out coached CMY last night. The inconsistent execution, especially against lesser teams is troubling and really limits what this team can accomplish.

    For all of the X’s and O’s offensive prowess, just getting the team to show up game to game and half to half seems to be a challenge. They have a high ceiling when playing well, which makes the inconsistency all the more frustrating.

  5. We are notorious for killing our own runs. The other team doesn’t have to. We get rushed and make a poor move, dribble off our feet, make an errant pass, decide to shoot rushed or awkwardly, etc. We need people on the same page and we need someone who can dunk the damn ball from the block. Kidd should be that guy but he looked shy and lost last night in the paint.

  6. Why have we gotten away from the style that made us so good early. The guards had some open looks last night but kept trying to force it inside

  7. Mutts and Pedulla are both great, and both not good. Can’t be both. Can’t be great and then be bad when the pressure is on. Whether it’s pressing too much and trying to do too much or a lack of composure, I just don’t know. In the end, this Hokies team has had a target on their back because they won the ACC Tourney last year. Every team has extra motivation. And for whatever reason, our coaches and players haven’t risen to that occasion. Injuries have not helped. Some tired guards out there late in the game. The other thing is this: Winning the tournament again while every team has all the motivation in the world to take the Hokies out is a giant hill to climb. I can hear the opposing coaches: “Guys, this team was asleep 1/2 the year last year and then ran roughshod through the ACC and won this thing. They can do it again so you need to bring it.”

    1. Lol…this team does not have a target on their back and there is no extra motivation to beat the Hokies. It’s laughable to think that’s happening.

      1. You can disagree and perhaps you are right. But everything points the other way. Not the only reason, but part of the puzzle. In college sports the team playing you knows what you did last year. They know that “Yeah, they won the tourney last year”. Everyone that’s ever played any sports knows this is part of the psyche and motivation. That’s a part of it. College sports are 50% emotion and focus.

  8. “despite grabbing 15 offensive rebounds, they scored just 14 second chance points.”. That is as difficult to watch

  9. I was definitly thinking we would be better than this. Especially after seeing how good Basile is. The Maddox situation, Padulla being inconsistent, Catoor being injured and actually worse have all killed our season. Dang! Got VT’d again.

  10. Pathetic effort, poor on ball perimeter defense just to name a few problems. CMY and his staff was out coached and our players were out played. We need a defensive assistant coach on our staff like Frazier.

  11. Another pathetic and embarrassing loss by our HOKIES. Is it asking too much for CMY to actually include defense 101 at some juncture in his game plan? But at least for now we can stop talking about an NCAA bid, and the way they’ve been playing we will probably be lucky to even make the NIT. What disappointing seasons for our two major men’s sports.

    1. “Actually include defense 101 in his game plan”

      Lol 😂 it’s statements like this that make people look like fools. Probably 80% of game prep is scouting the other team’s offensive strengths. We watch film and see GT and BC miss open 3s and lightly contested 3s. But we also see that GT is better shooting in transition…they coached ALL of that. Our players just are either 1) having some bad luck in that bad shooters suddenly have good games or 2) not executing/forgetting the scout e.g. finding Coleman of GT in transition and making sure they don’t get open transition 3s. Of course when you brick 17 threes and 12 layups, the other team has plenty of transition opportunities too.

      Our shooting and lack of finishing inside has been mind-blowingly bad in most all road games except UVA & ND.

      1. Thank you Hokiepro. Yes, MDriver has zero clues. Pathetic and embarrassing is losing by 30. Hokie will make the NIT. Good lord.

      2. I understand what you are stating about our D or lack there of. IMHO, it seems many of our games, especially recently we have not defended the perimeter very well and really had virtually no perimeter on ball defense.

    2. The D wasn’t very good last night but this team won’t win many games regardless of the quality of their D when Cattoor and Pedulla shoot 8-24 (4-15 from 3). It seems that CMY has no idea how two of his three best shooters will perform from one game to the next. Basile has been fairly consistent. That has to be driving CMY crazy!

      1. Took longer than normal to post this article as this performance is difficult to explain. Unexplainable, embrassingly pathetic. This team has to outshot their opponent (e.g. Notre Damn) because they sure as hell can’t play defense. Am now convinced ACC tourney was a fluke. (Not the1st fluke to happen in ACC over the years.) And the reservations I had, when he was hired, that MY is suitable as a coach at D1 P5 program have returned.

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