Virginia Tech was able to pull out an overtime win over Bradley on Saturday Dec. 22 by a final score of 66-65. Bradley turned the ball over on an inbound play, which led to the go-ahead, and eventually winning lay-up by Erick Green with 21 seconds left.
Green had a career high 31 points to lead the Hokies, but somehow the game was still as close as it gets right to the final buzzer. Jarell Eddie contributed 12 points, but shot only 2-for-8 from behind the arc. His 3-point percentage has been steadily slipping as of late, after starting the season tremendously accurate.
Junior forward Cadarian Raines has a huge performance with 16 points, 3 blocked shots, and 9 rebounds, 5 of which were offensive. This is the kind of performance head coach James Johnson needs from his number one big man, especially since the Hokies lack depth in the post.
Freshman Joey Van Zegeren was expected to have his minutes boosted after the injury to fellow forward Marshall Wood but still only got 13 minutes in the win, even with the overtime period. In those minutes he only took one shot, which he missed, and scored 2 points at the free throw line. He did pull down 5 boards, which is efficient rebounding for limited minutes.
The player who really saw his minutes boosted from the Wood injury is sophomore forward Christian Beyer. Beyer, who has averaged 7.5 minutes a game, got 27 minutes against Bradley. He got 2 steals as well as 9 rebounds to help his team to victory.
The drawback in the victory was the performance, or lack of, from guard Robert Brown. Brown is one of the key pieces to Virginia Tech and he only shot 1-for-6 from the field on Saturday. In 31 minutes of play he had just 2 points, 2 rebounds, 1 steal, and 4 assists. He also went 0-for-3 from 3-point range, and had 4 turnovers. If Brown and Eddie can turn around their poor accuracy from the field, the Hokies can contend with some of the better teams in the NCAA.
Next the 9-and-2 Hokies will play a 9-and-2 Colorado State team on Sunday Dec. 23 at 11:30pm.