Hokies Get By Wake Forest

Robert Brown hit this runner in the lane with 12 seconds left. It proved to be the game-winning basket.

Wake Forest missed a point blank put back as time expired, and the Hokies held on to beat the Demon Deacons 66-65 in Cassell Coliseum on Saturday.  Tech improved to 11-6 overall and 2-2 in the ACC with the win.  Wake Forest dropped to 9-8 and 2-3 in league play.

Erick Green had a huge second half, and went off for 22 points in the game, which is normal.  However, it was two other guys that hit a couple of huge shots down the stretch in this game.

Marquis Rankin scored his only basket of the game on a floater in the lane with 45 seconds left to put the Hokies up 64-62.  However, Wake Forest answered that shot with a three-pointer from Travis McKie to retake the lead.  This time it was Robert Brown’s turn.  Brown, who was 1-of-10 from the field up to that point, curled off the right wing with Erick Green being double teamed, received the pass from Green, and hit a runner in the paint with 12 seconds left that would eventually be the game-winner.

Brown has been struggling recently, but he’s been big in clutch situations.  Last week at Georgia Tech, he missed every shot he took in regulation, but came up with two big baskets in the overtime period.

“He’s got a short term memory,” head coach James Johnson joked following the game.

Virginia Tech trailed 37-31 at halftime, and allowed 15 Wake Forest offensive rebounds in the first half.  However, after halftime adjustments, Wake only had two offensive rebounds in the second half.

Jarell Eddie scored 18 points and had nine rebounds for the Hokies.  Cadarian Raines had a big game, scoring eight points and grabbing a career-high 13 rebounds, while blocking four shots and dishing out three assists.  Overall, it was possibly his best game of the season.

This was the type of game that’s tough to lose for any coach, and Wake Forest head coach Jeff Bzdelik was very disappointed following the game.

“Very hard fought game, by both teams,” Bzdelik said. “They just had one more point than we did.  We got exactly what we wanted at the end.  We had two shots at the rim.  You’re either a good coach or a bad coach depending on whether or not the ball goes in.”

Virginia Tech has another winnable game coming up this week.  They host UVA on Thursday night at 8pm.  The game will be televised by The ACC Network.

Box Score


11 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. I know there is a reason not to play it all the time, but it seems we defend and rebound so much better in the zone – check the last two games

  2. It wasn’t pretty but a win is a win. I was losing my mind at the Hokies’ inability to defend the pick and role on the perimeter. I’m not sure if it is the players struggling with assignments or a lack of cohesiveness in the defensive scheme but VT seems to have issues with basic college offensive sets.

    Glad to see Rankin and Brown step and hit big shots late. Rankin appeared to be more sure of himself today. He only took one or two other shots during the game but he looked confident when taking them even though they didn’t fall. Brown was pretty awful for much of the game making some really careless turnovers that cost the Hokies. Not sure if he is still feeling the effects of the illness but he really struggled. Glad to see him hit the big shot in the end.

    1. Rankin played a fine game…except for the last drive by Harris. As opposed to recent games, he stayed in front of the person he was guarding, instead of ceding the first step to the basket.

      Raines was a force. Rebounds. Use of his evil drop-step.

      Brown always drives well and has learned that extra waggle to avoid all but the Duke charge.

      Eddie is rebounding well. That is the central key to this team. He needs to rake across the inside to snatch rebounds.

      Green was simply amazing in the second half. That one drive where he launched the shot from somewhere UNDERNEATH the Cassell floor while being fouled was simply amazing.

      Beyer was a spark. He kept us from getting destroyed in the middle of the second.

      JVZ is rapidly gaining confidence and asserting his size force. The two-handed smack was beautiful.

  3. Great game by the Hokies. This game was very fun to watch in person. It reminded me of the Oklahoma State game from earlier in the year. Cadarian Raines played huge in the 2nd half rebounding and guarding the paint. Rankin gave good energy on defense and hit a big shot. Erick was Erick in the 2nd half. Eddie showed glimpses of why I think he will be a big time scorer the next two years. He can hit the 3 and he can also post up with his length. He showed an ability to drive to the basket today as well. In summary, the offense produced good shots but Green wasn’t hitting in the first and Brown is struggling. Both had a lot of good looks that didn’t go in.

    We need a good crowd on Thursday night for UVA. This is a very winnable game and a good crowd will help. Nice to have a few students back for today’s game.

  4. Surprised to see 3 guys who were off be clutch in the late game.

    Example 1. Eddie was hot the first half, but offensively nowhere in the 2nd…until he nailed a 3 pointer, I think shortly after Wake did.

    Example 2. Rankin was non existent on O, but hit that key floater.

    Example 3. Brown was off the whole game, including a few where I thought he dribbled way too much and forced it, then hit what turned out to be the game winner.

    Very similar thing happened vs GT. That was all Green to get us back into the game, but then Eddie and Brown were really the keys in OT.

    I guess those guys are clutch. I’ll take it.

  5. CC –

    Liked the way Mr. Eddie drove to the hoop in this game, and Joey’s aggresiveness. Raines not only rebounded but picked off many WF players as the Hokies ran their offense. Turned out to be good game with a lucky roll off the rim for Tech.

  6. Props to WF #30 Travis McKie. Had a double double in the first half! Dawg can play on my team any time he wants. Comes out of JM in Richmond, so I got to be proud of the local guy.

    We were out rebounded for the game, but we did a good job on the boards in the second half. Eddie is getting to be a pretty darn good scorer of the ball. He kept us in the game in the first half. If Green had shot any where near 50% in the first half this game would not have been close. Raines had a good game, too, with 13 boards and some nice blocks. Solid game for him, about as good as I’ve seen him.

    With Green off (sounds odd with 22 points) we were lucky to pull this one out of the hat. Wake had those two on the rim shots at the end, I can’t believe one of them didn’t go in (was that Raines that contested the one?). When Eddie corraled that last rebound and secured it I breathed a real sigh of relief. That game could have easily been our second at home loss. Come on, Hokies, you got to hold serve at home!

    That drive and floater by Rankin in the last minute made me do a double take. Very Green-like. I’d love to see Rankin do some more of that stuff in his stay at Tech. Man, that was nice, and we really needed it at the time.

    1. In addition to Green’s first-half struggles (1-of-8), the other thing that kept this game close was free throw shooting. The Hokies only hit 8-of-16, and that included 6-of-11 from Green and Eddie, who both shoot well over 80% from the line.

      Yes, that was Raines that contested that last shot. He said he learned his lesson from failing to rotate over in the WVU game.

      I still can’t believe Wake’s Cavanaugh missed that last putback. Check the pic (click below):


      1. Actually, Eddie has a hand in his face, and almost to the ball, so Cavanaugh didn’t have a clear shot or as easy a shot as I thought. Pretty good D.

      2. That kept it close, and another first half of poor defensive rebounding. Thank goodness we got on the boards again in the second half and eliminated those second and third shots or we would have lost this game by 10-15 points. I don’t know why this team can’t hit the boards hard for a full game.

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