Florida State eliminates Virginia Tech from the ACC Tournament with huge second half

The Seminoles drop 50 second-half points on the Hokies to eliminate them in the second round.

Mar 13, 2024; Washington, D.C., USA; Virginia Tech Hokies center Lynn Kidd (15) drives to the basket
Mar 13, 2024; Washington, D.C., USA; Virginia Tech Hokies center Lynn Kidd (15) drives to the basket / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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Going into the ACC Tournament, the Virginia Tech men’s basketball team entered on a three-game winning streak with wins over Wake Forest, Louisville, and Notre Dame. If they had visions of making the NCAA Tournament, they most likely would have to win four games in four days, something they did just two years ago.

Unfortunately for the Hokies, their stay in Washington, D.C. at Capital One Arena is just one day.

The No. 8 seed Hokies and No. 9 seed Florida State matched up for the third time this season after splitting the two regular-season meetings FSU used a strong second half to pull away from Virginia Tech and secure the 10-point win to advance to Thursday's quarterfinal against North Carolina at noon. Here are some key takeaways from the loss.

  • Virginia Tech took a 37-36 lead into halftime despite Robbie Beran and Sean Pedulla being in foul trouble in the opening half. Pedulla had 12 first-half points and had it going offensively, but losing him to foul trouble was big.
  • Another game, another second half allowing 50 points for Virginia Tech. Defense has been an issue this year and it was last season as well. It's one of the multiple factors why they are not going to the NCAA Tournament and to the NIT for a second straight year instead.
  • Tyler Nickel played well for the Hokies, scoring 18 points and grabbing seven rebounds. He shot 3-for-7 from behind the arc, but he made some big shots to keep Virginia Tech within striking distance for the Seminoles.
  • Tough last ACC Tournament game for Hunter Cattoor production-wise with just eight points. He knocked down an early 3-pointer, but after that, he struggled. Five of his eight points came from the free-throw line.
  • Virginia Tech finished shooting 59% from the field and just 25% from 3-point land. They knocked down just six of their 24 attempts from behind the arc, while the Seminoles shot 54% from the field and made 25 of 30 free throws.
  • Pedulla led Virginia Tech with 24 points and Nickel had 18. MJ Collins had 15 points and four assists. Beran was scoreless and Lynn Kidd finished with eight points. FSU outrebounded Tech 34-26.

Virginia Tech will now head back to Blacksburg and await their seeding in the NIT for next week.