Virginia Tech, who already has three 100-point outings on the season, just missed the triple-digit threshold this evening but the 99 points they did put up was more than enough to defeat the Houston Baptist Cougars, 99-73. Like the majority of the first part of the season, the Hokies were not sharp on the defensive end in the first half. However, they were able to play better on that side of the ball in the second period. Tonight, they gave up 38 points in the first 20 minutes but many of those buckets were uncontested. In the second half, the defense was tighter, and although there were some miscommunication issues, the overall effort and intensity was worlds better.
Buzz Williams even referred to the improved defense in the second half, but reiterated the point that stopping the other team needs to be the priority, saying “the defense needs to help the offense.”
Justin Bibbs followed up a career game against Washington with another strong performance tonight, dropping 26 points on an incredible 11-of-13 shooting (3-of-5 from three). Ahmed Hill also continued his hot shooting from the 2K Classic, making 5-of-8 of his three-point attempts.
As a team, the Hokies shot 61.5% from behind the arc, which has become strangely common for Virginia Tech. This season, there have been nine instances where a team has shot over 61% from three. The Hokies are responsible for two of those times. And the 16 made threes tonight by Virginia Tech? Only time an ACC team has done that this season.
Justin Robinson was all-around solid tonight, posting 15 points to along with 7 assists. His defense forced HBU players into multiple bad decisions, creating easy buckets on the other end. However, after last week’s injury scare, Robinson needs to flail less on his drives to the hoop and take hard landings.
Up next: Virginia Tech hosts Morehead State on Saturday at 1 PM.