Blacksburg, VA – Virginia Tech got 21 points each from Malcolm Delaney and Dorenzo Hudson en route to a 71-59 victory over visiting NC State on Wednesday night. The win helps Tech’s NCAA tournament case, and now they are 22-7 overall and 9-6 in the ACC. NC State dropped to 16-14, with a 4-11 mark in conference games.
The Hokies finished the season 15-1 in Cassell Coliseum. The 15 wins are the second-most home wins by a Virginia Tech team, and it ties the record for regular-season home wins in Cassell. The 1982-83 team won 16 games at home, including one NIT victory.
Tech shot 45.3% from the field as a team. Malcolm Delaney and Dorenzo Hudson each shot 50%, and Delaney knocked down 3-of-6 three-point attempts. Hudson added four assists and no turnovers. Turnover margin was a big reason for this win. The Hokies had just 10 turnovers, while the Wolfpack committed 20.
Jeff Allen added 18 points and nine rebounds for Tech. He stayed out of foul trouble and played 33 minutes, finishing the game 6-of-10 from the field.
No other player scored more than four points for Virginia Tech. It was a three-man show for much of the night.
The Hokies limited NC State star forward Tracy Smith to just 12 points and four rebounds. Senior Lewis Witcher was a big reason for that. Witcher got 21 minutes of playing time on his Senior Night, and finished with four points and four rebounds. He was assigned to defend Smith, and he did an excellent job. Smith had just two points in the first half and didn’t score his second bucket of the game until there was 10:47 left to go in the game and the Hokies were up by double digits.
Senior walk-on Paul Debnam also added a free throw for the Hokies, which delighted the home crowd.
Virginia Tech got off to a slow start in this game, and most of the first half was very low scoring. The Hokies had only 11 points halfway through the first half, but the game was tied at 11 thanks to impressive defense from Seth Greenberg’s team. NC State led for most of the first half, holding a 20-19 lead with 4:37 remaining in the first half.
That was the last time they led. The Hokies ended the half on a 11-2 run. Tech ran a set play for freshman wing Manny Atkins to end the half. Atkins was in the game because Terrell Bell had picked up his second foul. Atkins ended the half strongly for the Hokies, getting a steal, and then being rewarded with a good look for a layup on the other end.
Atkins’ layup gave the Hokies a 31-22 lead at halftime. They were finally establishing their dominance over an NC State team at the bottom of the ACC standings.
The Wolfpack rallied briefly early in the second half, cutting the lead to as few as two points. However, by the 12:36 mark Tech had extended their lead to double digits. Malcolm Delaney drained a three-pointer, his third in a row in less than four minutes, to give his team a 43-32 lead with 12:36 remaining. The Hokies never looked back.
Tech was never seriously threatened after Delaney’s shot. NC State was never able to pull closer than seven points, and two free throws by Delaney with 1:25 remaining gave the Hokies a 70-56 lead, which was their largest margin of the game. Paul Debnam finished off the scoring with a free throw, and Tech went on to win 71-59.
Virginia Tech returns to action on Saturday when they travel to Georgia Tech. Tip-off is scheduled for 4pm, and the game will be televised by Raycom.