The Hokies continued their winning ways Saturday afternoon, beating the Miami Hurricanes 77-62 on Senior Day where the crowd said their farewells to lone senior Shane Henry. It was a valiant effort on both sides of the ball as the Hokies were on fire for the entire game, shooting 59.2% from the field and from beyond the arc. Justin Bibbs' 19 points (5-6 from three) led the way for the Hokies, while LeDay and Robinson weren't far behind scoring 16 and 15 respectively. On the opposite bench, Miami looked like Virginia Tech in the first meeting, failing to get into any type of rhythm offensively, and finished the game shooting a paltry 42.4% from the field. This win entrenches the Hokies as the 6th seed in the ACC tournament next week.
FINAL: #Hokies upset No. 7 Miami 77-62 to finish 10-8 in ACC play. Will be No. 6 seed in ACC tournament.— Mike Barber (@RTD_MikeBarber) March 5, 2016
1. I'll take credit for the Hokies' past two wins for predicting losses in my preview articles. I think I've found the secret formula to success, for the Hokies at least. However, if we're really giving credit for predictions, I'm going to have to tip my hat to u/TheUBank whose seemingly outlandish prediction was partly true:
2. The Cassell was tremendous this season. The crowd got louder and louder with every game and every possession. Even though Spring Break started yesterday, the student section was popping and it was great to see after years of empty seats. The Hokies posted a 6-2 home record in conference play this season, which is outstanding. Might have to think about buying season tickets next year.
3. Fittingly, the Hokies saved their best for last. Their first ACC game against the Wolfpack wasn't pretty although they won in OT. Now they just beat the #7 team in the country in their own house by a healthy 15 point margin. Now riding a five game win streak in which they've played quality basketball, the Hokies will be one of the hotter teams in the upcoming ACC tournament.
4. I don't think we can say enough about Justin Robinson's impact on this team, especially during this last portion of the schedule. In the 5th ACC game of the season at Notre Dame, Robinson suffered a hand injury but it was hard to say that injury (if serious) would have a huge impact on the team. I don't think anyone would say that now. J-Rob posted 15 points and notched 8 assists, including one of the dirtiest passes I've ever seen with his 360-falling away-no-looker to Jalen Hudson.
5. Turnovers were once again the difference. The Hokies were able to go on elongated runs because they were able to force them consistently, especially when Miami tried to pound the ball inside. They collapsed the paint effectively forcing 14 turnovers and even more bad shots. Virginia Tech was also able to get out in transition of those turnovers which were backbreakers for the Hurricanes.
6. For those of you wondering about an NIT bid, we've talked about the possibility on Gobbler Country in this article. I think this win will cement a bid, but obviously that's still up in the air with conference tournament results that still need to be determined.
7. Justin Bibbs picked a great game to finally get back into his non-conference shooting form where he shot over 60% from three-point range. Sure he had great performances against Wake Forest (both games), but in my opinion his best two games in conference play have come today and against UVA, where he's shot a combined 9-for-11 from deep. I guess the Hokies can count on Bibbs if they face a top 10 team in the tournament to light the opposition up.
8. Best of Twitter: the icon Shane Henry
The Kiss. pic.twitter.com/42PQnDwFsP— Ivan Morozov (@ivanmorozov) March 6, 2016
9. This game showed and proved that this team knows how to improve and fix their mistakes. They turned a 16-point loss in Miami into a 15 point win at home, a 31 point swing. They attacked the basket and only settled for mostly open three point looks. Consistency is the sign of a good team, and the Hokies have been very consistent in the last 5 games.
10. With the ACC tournament next week and nearly the entire ACC picture complete, the Hokies will face the winner of Boston College and Florida State. So Florida State. They've already beaten the Seminoles once this season, and with the way they're playing, I think they have a really good shot at the quarterfinals of the tournament. Seriously, who would've believed that in October?
March Madness is here and it's real folks.