Virginia Tech breaks three-game losing streak with win over Florida State

Florida State v Virginia Tech
Florida State v Virginia Tech / Ryan Hunt/GettyImages

75. 435. ACC. 83. 447. Final

It was 17 days since the Virginia Tech men’s basketball team last won a game when they beat Georgia Tech, 91-67, on Jan. 25. Losses to Duke, Miami, and Notre Dame had the Hokies returning to Cassell Coliseum Tuesday night after losses to the Hurricanes and Irish looking to break their losing streak. It was as close as a must-win for a team that is sputtering late in the season as you can get considering a trip to Chapel Hill and a matchup with 7th-ranked North Carolina is next on Saturday.

Tied 39-39 at the half, the Hokies began the second half on a 10-2 run behind two Tyler Nickel 3-pointers and never trailed again in a victory that improved Mike Young’s team to 14-10 overall and 6-7 in the ACC.

This night could have been a complete disaster for the Hokies as Hunter Cattoor fell hard on his elbow early in the game and appeared to be injured. Still, the senior stayed in the game and immediately hit a 3-pointer a few possessions later off an offensive rebound. He led Virginia Tech with 20 points. Sean Pedulla had 19 points and 14 of those came from the free throw line. He had four assists, but like most of his teammates, he struggled at times with the Seminoles' length and turned the ball over four times.

Nickel was a huge spark off the bench for Young with three 3-pointers and a dunk late in the game to seal the victory for his 15 points. Lynn Kidd had a breakout game that the Hokies’ fans have been waiting for with 12 points and 15 rebounds. 

As is the case in most Virginia Tech wins, they shot the ball well from behind the arc, going 11-for-23 and another big key was they went 28-for-32 from the free throw line. Florida State, which beat Tech 77-74 last month, shot 53% from the field and still lost. College basketball.

The Hokies will be facing a Tar Heels team coming off an 86-79 loss at Syracuse on Tuesday night. An angry North Carolina team is less than ideal for the Hokies this weekend.