Mar 2, 2015; Blacksburg, VA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies forward Satchel Pierce (21) looks to pass against the Boston College Eagles in the first half at Cassell Coliseum. Boston College defeated Virginia Tech 66-59. Mandatory Credit: Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports
This season has been a long one Hokie fans. However, on Saturday afternoon the first regular season under new coach Buzz Williams will come to an end. The season was not as successful as the first year Hokie head man might have dreamed of, but it has been an interesting season. The Hokies have been close to pulling upsets in many conference games this year, only to come up just short. Saturday is senior day in Blacksburg, and the Hokies would like nothing more than to send its two senior players out with a win. Will Johnston, and Christian Beyer along with the other Hokies will face a tough test, as they welcome the Miami Hurricanes into Cassell Coliseum.
The Hokies previous meeting with the Hurricanes did not go as planned. The Hurricanes blew the game wide open in the second half in Coral Gables in route to a 24 point thrashing of the Hokies. The Hurricanes took advantage of their distinct size advantage over the Hokies to dominant the inside. Tonye Jekiri was too much to handle for the undersized Hokies. Jekiri finished the game with 15 points and 15 rebounds. Jekiri’s 15 rebounds were only 4 short of how many the Hokies had as a team. The Hokies finished the game with 19 rebounds. If the Hokies let Jekiri have another big game on the glass it could be an extremely long afternoon.
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Satchel Pierce is the only Hokie was any size of note, and Buzz will have to lean on him heavily to try and counteract the inside presence of the Hurricanes. Pierce has come on in his play as of late, all starting with a stellar performance against player of the year candidate Jahlil Okafor. Pierce will need this type of game again if the Hokies are going to be able to get the win on Senior Day.
The three point basket is also going to play a huge part in getting the Hokies a win on Saturday. The Hokies are number one in the conference in three point baskets made. The Hokies shoot 39 percent from behind the arc as a team. Adam Smith leads the Hokies in that category, and is third in the conference in three point percentage. Smith is a deadly shooter, with his quick release, and ability to elevate. However, as of late Smith is the only Hokie who can be depended on to score consistently. The Hokies will need another scorer to help shoulder the offensive load to get the win against a talented Hurricane team. Perhaps a senior playing in his last game at the Cassell could provide the scoring boost the Hokies desperately need.
The Hokies suffered one of their more lop sided losses of the season against Miami a few weeks ago. It would be fantastic to send the seniors out on a winning note by avenging this loss. The Hurricanes are floating around that line that marks getting in the NCAA tournament, or being left out. A loss to the Hokies would definitely keep the Hurricanes out of the NCAA tournament. However, the Hokies are not going to be able to overcome the size difference. The seniors end their careers at Cassell Coliseum with a loss 76-63.