Hokies look to take the rematch against Miami at Cassell Coliseum on Monday night
Virginia Tech enters Monday night’s game against Miami as winners of four of their last five games. It is a short turnaround for the Hokies, after beating the Boston College Eagles on the road on Saturday afternoon. The Hokies rode hot shooting in an impressive second half where they outscored the Eagles 53-35 en route to a 91-75 victory. Zach LeDay finished with 18 points, and junior Ty Outlaw finished with 16, as he hit all five of his three point attempts.
Due to numerous flight delays, the Hokies did not return home until Sunday, per a tweet from head coach Buzz Williams.
It won’t be the first time that the Hokies endured a short turnaround. Just two weeks ago, the team beat Virginia in double overtime and played on the road at Pittsburgh less than 48 hours later, which also resulted in a hard fought victory.
The Hokies will be hoping for more of the same on Monday night against the Hurricanes, who enter play with a respectable 20-8 record, with a slightly better 10-6 conference record than Virginia Tech. The Hokies hold a 20-8 record, with a 9-7 mark in ACC play.
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These two teams previously met on February 9th in Coral Gables, which ended with a 74-68 victory by the Hurricanes. The final score is deceiving, as the Hokies were fighting an uphill battle all night, with the game never seeming as close as the final score. Davon Reed finished with 18 points for Miami, and played a very solid defensive game as well.
On Monday night, the key will be slowing down Reed and limiting the turnovers. With Reed being so proficient offensively, coupled with 15 team turnovers for the Hokies in the first match-up, Virginia Tech never had a chance on the road. If they execute in both of these facets a bit better here in the second match-up, the Hokies should have a much better chance to win at home.
Players to Watch:
Miami: G Ja’Quan Newton
- Newton returned from a three-game suspension in the team’s 55-50 victory over Duke and scored seven points off the bench on 3-for-10 shooting. Expect Newton to be inserted back into the starting lineup against the Hokies, who he scored 16 points against in the first match-up between these two teams. Newton is averaging 14.7 points and 3.8 rebounds per game on the year so far.
Virginia Tech: G Justin Robinson
- Robinson scored 15 points in the first game against the Hurricanes in early February, and is coming off of his best all-around game of the year against Boston College on Saturday, as he notched a double-double with 13 points and 11 assists.
Both teams are rolling right now and heading full steam ahead with momentum to the ACC and NCAA Tournaments in the next few weeks. It should be a back-and-forth game that will be highly competitive right until the end, but the Hurricanes have two consistent offensive threats that seem to get key buckets when they need to in Ja’Quan Newton and Davon Reed, which should prove to be the difference in a very close game in Blacksburg.
Where to Watch:
Miami and Virginia Tech will tip at 9 PM ET and the game can be seen nationally on ESPN2.