No. 11 Virginia Tech Women’s Basketball Loses First ACC Game At No. 21 Florida State

Elizabeth Kitley had another 30-point double-double but the Hokies dropped their first ACC game of the year at Florida State. (Virginia Tech athletics)

No. 11 Virginia Tech lost its first ACC game of the season on Sunday in Tallahassee, falling 89-81 to No. 21 Florida State. The program had won its last 15 games against conference opponents.

The two top-25 foes traded leads all afternoon on ESPN but the Hokies (13-3, 4-1 ACC) couldn’t match the Seminoles’ (14-4, 5-1) fourth-quarter run. FSU outscored Tech 25-16 in the final period, which included a 15-0 run that carried over from the third quarter and swung the momentum back in its direction. Tech had multiple chances in the final few minutes that didn’t fall.

“We just weren’t the better team today, start to finish,” Virginia Tech head coach Kenny Brooks said on the Virginia Tech Sports Network after the game. “We took a little too long to adjust to their scheme, gave up 23 points before the first media timeout. We made the adjustment and then we really got to the point where we got a lead and we didn’t still have that mentality where we were really going to try to put that pedal down on the gas.

“We didn’t have that mentality that we needed to have. Now, they’re a good basketball team, especially when they play at home, and their guards did what they needed to do and their guards were spectacular today and we relied too much on Liz [Kitley]. We needed more help, she needed more help.”

As usual, Elizabeth Kitley was the story for the Hokies. She finished with 30 points (14-of-28) and 12 rebounds, the fourth time this season she’s had a 30-10 double-double. The All-American center had five assists, too. Through five league games, she’s averaging 25 points and 11 rebounds per game.

She didn’t have enough help when it mattered, though. Tech received big boosts from Matilda Ekh (14 points, 4-of-6 3FG) and Rose Micheaux (12 points, 5-of-7 FG), but after shooting 19-of-34 (56%) in the first half, it was just 14-of-36 (39%) in the second. That included a 6-of-16 mark (38%) in the fourth quarter, and it missed six of its final seven field goals.

Georgia Amoore finished with 13 points and eight assists but turned the ball over four times and was just 6-of-17 from the field. She dealt with foul trouble in the first half — and eventually fouled out late — which, combined with the foul trouble of backup point guard Carleigh Wenzel, forced the Hokies to change some things up. For the final 4:30 of the first half, they rolled with a rotation of Cayla King, Matilda Ekh, Olivia Summiel/Carys Baker, Clara Strack/Rose Micheaux and Kitley.

At the time they entered, Tech trailed by one, 33-32. Over the final few minutes, that group outscored FSU 14-7 and took a 46-40 lead into halftime.

Rose Micheaux had 12 points for the Hokies on Sunday but the team didn’t have enough consistency across the board. (Virginia Tech athletics)

“That was the best stretch we had,” Brooks said. “We just didn’t have consistency. I thought Georgia played a little bit fast today and we needed her to keep her composure against teams like this who want to put pressure on her full-court. She’s got to be better than that. I thought Cayla came in and did a really good job, everybody who played in that second quarter did a really good job for us, but we’ve just got to be a little bit more consistent.”

The Hokies led for the entirety of the third quarter but struggled to contain the Seminoles’ main quartet. Brooks made the switch to a 2-3 zone in the second quarter, which helped Tech get some stops. The ‘Noles figured some things out as the game wore on, however, and lit Tech up for a 69 percent clip in the third quarter (9-of-13) and was 54 percent (7-of-13) in the fourth.

Sara Bejedi was nearly unstoppable from beyond the arc. She scored a career-high 31 points for Florida State on 9-of-15 shooting, including 5-of-9 from 3-point range, and knocked down eight of her 12 free throws. She grabbed eight rebounds and dished out three assists too.

Ta’Niya Latson scored 20 for FSU, nine of which came from the foul line, and had eight assists. Makayla Timpson added 18 points (on 9-of-15 FG) and five boards down low while O’Mariah Gordon chipped in 17 points (3-of-3 3FG), four rebounds and four assists.

King had five points, six boards and six dimes for Tech while Strack and Summiel each added a basket — plus seven and four rebounds, respectively — and Baker knocked down one 3-pointer. But despite outrebounding FSU 36 to 32 and only turning it over 11 times, Virginia Tech couldn’t pull out the win on the road.

The Hokies are back in action on Thursday in Durham, N.C., at 8 p.m. ET as they face Duke (11-5, 3-2). The Blue Devils blew the doors off Georgia Tech on Sunday in an 84-46 victory. Tech won two of the three matchups last season.

Box Score: No. 21 Florida State 89, No. 11 Virginia Tech 81 

22 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Team players and coaches work hard, having these horrible officiating calls impact who’s the winner is ridiculous.

  2. I can point to one thing that all 3 losses have in common that Coach has to solve or it will get worse as opponents notice. Opponent drives down the lane, either on fast breaks (not getting back on D, not challenging or slowing up the ball handler or not being fast enough), or half court bull driving from the top of the key (move your feet, draw the charge – it’s like Tech is afraid of contact). Am I wrong?

  3. Transition game killed us, particularly in the first quarter. That needs a lot of work. Other teams are going to zero in on that in film study. I sure hope king gets out her slump soon. We need the help.

  4. FSU is much faster than our team and Bedeji was “lights out.” Two of our three portals played well.
    Sure CKB will make “adjustments” and we have lots of games left. Top of ACC is very good and road wins are going to be Tough. GO, go HOKIE LADIES!!!!!!!!

  5. Miami was quicker and they shot the lights out. The late “offensive foul” call on Kitley was one of the worst I’ve ever seen but we were on fumes then. Unlikely that call affects the outcome.

  6. It’s great to have Amoore “take over” games when our offense is struggling and we need her to. When she came in the 3rd quarter of this game we didn’t need her to. Our offense was doing OK. But, she tried to do it anyway, took some tough shots, some early in the shot clock. And wasn’t hitting. She is only hitting 28% from 3 in ACC play. I know she has great range but she has to factor in % when taking tough shots. Good to see others get involved in the offense.

  7. I think the Hokie ladies left it all on the court against N.C. State, then had to face a good Miami team, and next they traveled to Florida State to take on a team which almost beat the “Wolfpack” ! All within a week. I think the “poor darlins” just ran out of gas! Was a tough section of their schedule.

  8. This team still has a ways to go to match their performance from last year. I thought the team advanced a little today. It was good to see Rose Micheaux score in double digits with assists from Kitley. It does seem like when Amoore and/or Kitley leave the game, the team is able to gain ground on the opposing team. Should probably see more of the backups. The transition game needs some work- we missed some layups on fast breaks. Will be interesting to see how the team progresses as the season progresses. Nobody is going undefeated in this league.

  9. Difference in the game 16 more free throws for FSU and they made 9 of them. Calls were bad but from what I know to win on the road you have to play so much better than the other team that free throws shouldn’t matter. Too bad they don’t come to Cassell. Tech would beat them at home. Good news only losses so far have been to three ranked teams (two on the road and one neutral court). The team will play better.

  10. I don’t blame the refs. Brooks had a combination of players that worked on offense in 2nd quarter and never went back to it. Amoore is not playing at the level she did last year. Kitley is better.

    1. It surprised me FSU had no answer for the big lineup. Tech is that athletic this year but they are really big not sure why we don’t lean into our strength when it is working.

  11. Really surprised to not see Kitley get a look when VT had multiple chances for a basket down 77-80. VT ended up taking bad shots on 3 possessions in a row and then FSU was able to extend the lead for good.

    They played well for stretches but the runs FSU had to start the game and the one that extended from the end of third into the 4th quarter were just too much (VT outscored 28-11 combined over those two stretches).

  12. NOthing about that lineup in the 2nd q…or about some of those players not seeing the court again?

    1. I missed the part about, “the male ref.” I’m not qualified to comment on basketball refs but one Fb posted I know noted the reffing was bad. And the two commentators thought they blew it on the foul called on Liz when she was on the floor, handing off to Georgia and not moving. They thoought a foul should have been called on the FSU [player. In the end, too many missed shots down low and too many possessions w/o a score in the late moments. That said, no one in this conference is going to go undefeated on the road, much less on the season. I also think FSU showed more energy than we did.

      1. THe reffinf was not bad. there were bad calls and horrible calls in isolation like the one you refer too. But FSU put pressure on us all night because their guards drove aggressively and we were bad in transition defense. OUr style of play means the only player who is going to consistently draw fouls is kitley. We also benefitted from calls. For example, the “male ref” called a charge on FSU when the call could have gone against King.

  13. Did you see that terrible foul call against Kitley when she was standing still holding the ball and Bedeji ran her over? I noticed most of the close calls that went against the Hokies were made by the male referee.

    1. Not really. The male ref called the charge against FSU at half-court when there was the collision with King. Most people actually focused on one of the female refs

    2. I think we were only down by 5 when that terrible call was made with only only a few minutes left in the game. It definitely made a difference on how the game ended, so no one can say the officiating did not make a difference in the game IMO. There were several other ticky tack and phantom calls against the Hokies the officials swallowed their whistles on F$U througout the game.

      1. Womens’ b ball refereeing is poor at best. Crews seem to be based on gender/ethnicity balance instead of competency

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