Virginia Tech scored the first 16 points of the game and never looked back in a 79-49 home victory over Charleston Southern on Monday night. The win moves the Hokies to 9-6 overall as they look forward to their ACC home opener against the Maryland Terrapins on Saturday afternoon.
Virginia Tech put up some impressive numbers across the board on Monday night. Seth Greenberg’s philosophy is defense first, and his team took that to heart. Charleston Southern shot just 32.2% from the field, committed 23 turnovers, and did not score until the 12:30 mark of the first half.
The Hokies had their offense going as well, scoring 79 points, their second-highest total of the season. Tech shot 47.9% from the field, which was impressive considering they were just 5-of-24 (20.8%) from the outside. They showed good ball movement and a willingness to make the extra pass, racking up 25 assists on 34 field goals. Malcolm Delaney led the team with eight assists while committing just one turnover.
A.D. Vassallo led the team with 21 points, while also pulling down five rebounds in 31 minutes of action. He was 9-of-18 from the field, and 3-of-10 from three-point range. Deron Washington added 10 points, four assists and two steals. Jeff Allen had a double-double, finishing with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Two players came off the bench to give the Hokies a great spark. Cheick Diakite had eight points, seven rebounds and four blocks in 20 minutes. Freshman point guard Hank Thorns scored 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting, and also had three assists in 16 minutes of action.
Virginia Tech even had solid production from their deep bench. Walkon guard Paul Debnam had four points and two rebounds in two minutes of playing time.
Virginia Tech didn’t score until nearly three minutes into the game, but once they got going they were hard to stop. A.D. Vassallo’s bucket at the 17:21 mark got the Hokies started on a 16-0 run, which was capped by a layup by Cheick Diakite with 12:55 left in the first half. At that point Tech led 16-0, and the Buccaneers had virtually no chance to get back in the game.
Freshman forward Omar Carter scored the first 11 points of the game for Charleston Southern.
Tech led by as many as 21 when Diakite hit a jumper with 2:17 left in the half to put his team up 40-19. The Bucs then scored the last five points of the half to make the score 40-24 at the break.
Charleston Southern tried to climb back into it in the second half. Chris Moore’s three-pointer with 13:52 remaining made the score 48-35, but that’s as close as the Buccaneers came. A 10-0 Tech run capped by a Hank Thorns layup made the score 56-35, and the Hokies coasted from there.
Virginia Tech returns to action this Saturday against Maryland in Cassell Coliseum. The game will tip-off at 2pm, and it will be televised by Raycom/Lincoln Financial. Check your local listings.