Nov 19, 2014; Blacksburg, VA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies forward Joey van Zegeren (2) and guard Malik Muller (1) high five late in the in the second half against the Liberty Flames at Cassell Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports
The Virginia Tech Hokies won their second game of the season last night to go to 2-0 with a victory over the Liberty Flames 73-63. The Hokies once again went with four guards in the starting lineup along with one big man in junior Joey Van Zegeren. Van Zegeren struggled in the season opener but was absolutely dominant against Liberty.
Van Zegeren had 17 points which was the second most points in a single game for him in his career while he also had 10 rebounds which tied a career high and gave him his first career double-double. Van Zegeren also had a block while 4 of his 10 rebounds were on the offensive side with a couple resulting in put-back dunks.
The Dutch big man was challenged by a Liberty team that had a lot more depth in the frontcourt but Van Zegeren shined throughout most of the game. Outside of a few bad turnovers, Van Zegeren was very productive around the post and proved that the Hokies have the big man to go with 4 players on the outside.
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Van Zegeren did struggle some when he was in the high post but when Van Zegeren sets up in the low post around the block, he can absolutely dominate. Van Zegeren proved that he knows how to get to the rim and draw fouls or even make a couple of hook shots. Van Zegeren also was 3 of 6 from the free throw line which, while being disappointing, is progress for him.
Van Zegeren showed signs of improvement on the offensive end last season and is looking like someone who can be relied on as a 13 points, 7 rebounds type of guy with some double-doubles. Van Zegeren’s ability to do a lot of damage as a singular big man will also allow Virginia Tech to maintain a lineup with 4 guards which will make them ferocious on the fast break.
Joey Van Zegeren is becoming a completely dominant post player on the offensive side and not just on the defensive side. However, the key for Van Zegeren will be to stay out of foul trouble.