Dec 7, 2014; Blacksburg, VA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies guard Devin Wilson (11) guards the out-of-bounds play against the Radford Highlanders in the second half at Cassell Coliseum. Radford defeated Virginia Tech 68-66. Mandatory Credit: Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports
After losing to Penn State in a very close game this past week, the Virginia Tech Hokies looked to bounce back at home against the nearby Radford Highlanders. Most people expected the Hokies to cruise to an easy victory against Radford with the Hokies showing signs of progress in some of their previous games.
Instead, the Hokies came out flat and lost a very close one to an experience Radford team.
The Hokies lost to Radford by a final score of 68-66 in a game where they had some issues shooting the basketball in the first half which caused them to be down 39-30 at half. In the second half, the Hokies made a large comeback and went up 6 at one point before Radford made a late comeback with R.J. Price making a layup with 27 seconds left to take the lead before Javonte Green made a free throw late to make it a two-point game.
The players told the media that they were disappointed and even embarassed by the way they played in this game, especially the first half.
The Hokies did not play up to the level that they expect to and this comment shows the critical culture shift that is happening in Blacksburg under Buzz Williams. Overall, the Hokies weren’t too bad but just didn’t make enough shots while Radford had one player who had a career game.
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Radford guard R.J. Price was very good in this game as he shot 9 of 17 from the field and 5 of 13 from beyond the arc along with making 2 free throws to have 25 points. Price made some really tough shots in this game which proved to make a big difference in the outcome of this game.
The Hokies and Radford had the same number of rebounds though Virginia Tech had 11 offensive rebounds compared to 8 for Radford. The Hokies won the turnover battle as they forced 15 turnovers and allowed 12 turnovers. The Hokies missed two more free throws than Radford with the Highlanders going 7 of 10 from the line and the Hokies going 5 of 10 from the line.
The Hokies didn’t shoot the basketball too bad as they were 27 of 54 from the field and 7 of 15 from beyond the arc. The Hokies had four different players in double figures with Adam Smith leading the way with 12 points followed by Devin Wilson with 11, and Joey Van Zegeren and Justin Bibbs with 10 each.
This is definitely a disappointing loss for the Hokies but with the way this team acted after this game, there’s plenty of reason to think Virginia Tech can dominate their next four games before facing West Virginia in Morgantown at the end of the non-conference schedule.