Raleigh, NC — Virginia Tech took care of business on Wednesday night, smashing NC State 72-52 on the road. It was Tech’s first win in Raleigh since 1917. The Hokies moved to 19-4 overall with the win, and 6-3 in the ACC. NC State dropped to 14-11 and 2-8.
This was a night where everything went Virginia Tech’s way. The Hokies were the worst shooting team statistically in the ACC entering the game, but they hit their first 10 field goals against NC State en route to a 27-of-51 (52.9%) shooting night. Tech didn’t miss a shot until Erick Green misfired on a jumper at the 9:47 mark of the first half, and by then it was already 26-9.
Tech was also impressive on the defensive end. The Hokies blocked 12 shots, including four each by Jeff Allen and Victor Davila. NC State went just 20-of-70 (28.6%) from the field. The Wolfpack missed all 11 of their three-pointers, the first time since 1989 they didn’t connect from the outside in a game.
The impressive margin in shooting percentages that went in favor of the Hokies helped offset the turnover margin and rebounding. Tech had a rare game in which they had more turnovers (16) than their opponent (15). They were also outrebounded 45-37, and NC State had an astounding 27 offensive rebounds. Dennis Horner alone had nine offensive boards and 16 total for the game. Of course, 50 missed shots creates a lot of opportunities for offensive rebounds.
The Hokies were successful in shutting down Tracy Smith, who came into the game averaging 17.6 points and 8.3 rebounds per game. Smith had 12 points and 7 rebounds against Virginia Tech, and was only 4-of-12 from the field.
Dorenzo Hudson led all scorers with 23 points. He was 9-of-13 from the field and 2-of-4 from three-point range. He began the game by making Tech’s first two field goals, both three-pointers, and that set the tone for the remainder of the game. Hudson was confident and aggressive, constantly taking the ball to the hoop and finishing.
Malcolm Delaney added 15 points on 4-of-10 shooting. He was 6-of-7 from the free throw line. Virginia Tech’s victory was so complete that Delaney had a relatively quiet night, attempting just 15 shots, which is a low number for him. He didn’t have to score for the Hokies to win.
Jeff Allen continued his recent streak of good play by scoring 14 points, grabbing eight rebounds and blocking four shots. He was 5-of-7 from the field, finishing well on the inside. J.T. Thompson came off the bench to add 12 points and seven rebounds, equaling Tracy Smith’s numbers in just 18 minutes of action.
This game was over practically before it began. Dorenzo Hudson hit two quick three-pointers to begin the action, and the Hokies were up 26-9 before they missed their first jump shot. NC State made a run, as most ACC teams do, and cut the lead to as little as eight points in the first half.
The Hokies responded well to that run, closing the half on a quick 5-2 run that put them back up 34-23 heading into halftime. Tech was controlling the game, but had to continue to play well to ensure the win.
That’s exactly what they did in the second half. The Wolfpack put up no fight at all over the final 20 minutes. The Hokies extended their lead to as many as 22 points in the second half, before Jordan Vandenberg hit a meaningless shot with 14 seconds left to make the final score 72-52. Virginia Tech played well for all 40 minutes, and never took their foot off the gas.
Tech returns to action on Saturday night when they host UVA in a huge game in Cassell Coliseum. Tip-off is scheduled for 8pm, and the game will be televised by Raycom. Check your local listings.