Two ACC top 10 scorers were showcased on Jan. 24 in the Thursday night match-up between Virginia Tech and the University of Virginia. Coming into the contest Tech point guard Erick Green was averaging nearly 25 points per game to lead all of NCAA basketball, and UVA guard Joe Harris was seventh in the ACC averaging just over 15 points per game.
The UVA Cavaliers went on a run with about seven minutes left in the first half, and were up by 15 points five minutes later with 2:00 left in the half. Harris carried the Cavaliers through this run with 12 first half points, but then Green started playing with emotion and toughness.
Green grabbed two offensive rebounds and six points in the final 1:30 of the half. With the ball in his hands, and a dead shot clock, Green made a fade-away jumper to cut the UVA lead to nine at the halftime buzzer.
The Hokies couldn’t ride that energy into the second half, and fell flat offensively. Their only player to score in double digits was Green, who lit up the scoreboard with 35.
The 3-point shooting woes continued for Virginia Tech as Robert Brown and Jarell Eddie went a combined 0-for-5 from behind the arc. Eddie is usually a capable shooter, but Brown has been terrible all year. He needs to stop shooting the three and instead look to score off the dribble inside the three-point line. Brown is supposed to be his team’s third best scoring option, but he had no points in the loss to UVA.
Virginia shot well throughout the game and won by a final score of 74-58. They have looked like an improving team winning seven of their last ten contests, including an impressive upset over North Carolina.
Virginia Tech has lost five of their last seven games. Early in the season they looked like a solid shooting and scoring squad, but as of late their inconsistencies have been exposed and exploited. Brown needs to step up his game as a supporting scorer or the Hokies will continue to struggle.