The Virginia Tech Hokies entered Saturday’s regular-season finale on the outside looking in for the NCAA Tournament. At 19-11, and 11-8 in the ACC, the Hokies had won nine of their previous 10 games, and a win over Clemson could strengthen their tournament hopes.
Unfortunately, Clemson defeated the Hokies, 63-59, meaning Tech will need to win at least two games in the ACC Tournament even to have a shot the Field of 68.
Virginia Tech led Clemson 33-30 at halftime. Unfortunately for the Hokies, they had their worst shooting performance from the field in ACC play, shooting just 37% from the floor. The Hokies were even worse from 3-point range, making nine of their 30 attempts from beyond the arc. Tech missed its first six 3-point attempts.
Nahiem Alleyne led the Hokies with 17 points, making five of his 10 attempts from 3-point range. Justyn Mutts contributed 15 points and nine assists, while Keve Aluma scored seven points and pulled down eight rebounds.
The Hokies outrebounded Clemson, 31-29, and it was just the second time this season they lost while outrebounding their opponent.
The loss locks Virginia Tech into the No. 7 seed in the ACC Tournament. The Hokies will play the winner of the 10/15 game featuring Clemson and N.C. State. Perhaps Tech can get some revenge on the Tigers next week. If the Hokies can win their first tournament game, they will play No. 2 Notre Dame, a team they beat in Blacksburg earlier this season.