Starting the second half of the ACC schedule, the 17th-ranked Virginia Tech women's basketball team began a difficult part of the schedule with a road game at No. 24 North Carolina on Sunday afternoon. It wasn't always pretty and the Tar Heels slowed the game down, but in the end, the Hokies made enough plays to pick up a very big overtime win in Chapel Hill.
Leading by six points at halftime, the second half began the same way the games at Florida State and Duke went last month which led to losses, the third quarter was tough for Virginia Tech, but they were able to make enough plays this time to overcome a lot of turnovers and collect the road victory. Here are some takeaways after the Hokies improved to 18-4 overall and 8-2 in the ACC, while the Tar Heels fell to 15-8 overall and 6-4 in the conference.
* One look at the box score and you'll see that Elizabeth Kitley recorded another double-double with 15 points and 15 rebounds, but it was not one of her better offensive games. She was 7-for-21 from the field and her shot looked flat and came up short a lot of the time. Could it be because as the game went along North Carolina doubled her and was physical with her? Maybe, but she was big in the fourth quarter and overtime on the defensive end.
* Georgia Amoore finished with a team-high 21 points and had 11 assists for another double-double. She scored seven of the Hokies' 16 overtime points and her 3-pointer with 1:43 left gave Virginia Tech a 61-57 lead, then she picked up her 11th assist when she fed Mitlda Ekh with a cross-court pass for a 3-pointer and a 64-57 lead.
* It wasn't a great game for Cayla King who had six points on two 3-pointers, both came in the second half, but she played well on the defensive end, grabbed five rebounds, and did the little things to help her team win. Carleigh Wenzel had two first-half 3-pointers off the bench to provide a spark and Clara Strack had just three points, but she had four rebounds and two big blocks.
* Ekh finished with 14 points and four 3-pointers and three of those came in the second half and overtime. She finished 5-for-10 from the field and had eight rebounds. She has hit some big 3-pointers this season. At the end of the second quarter, she collected a loose ball on the offensive end and hit a baseline jumper for a 26-20 halftime lead for the Hokies.
* Neither team shot the ball well, but somehow, the Hokies won on the road against a ranked opponent after committing 17 turnovers. Handling the ball was an issue and late in the fourth quarter and overtime, Virginia Tech struggled with the press and zones that the Tar Heels went into. They will need to handle the ball better Thursday night at North Carolina State.
* North Carolina missed 11 straight field goals in the first half, but Virginia Tech was not able to take advantage and build on their lead because of seven turnovers. Virginia Tech did not shoot their first free throw until late in the third quarter and finished the game 10-for-14 from the line.
The Hokies will travel to NC State Thursday night and the Wolfpack will be looking for revenge after Virginia Tech rallied in the fourth quarter on Jan. 7 to win, 63-62, on a Kitley basket with 0.9 seconds left.