Friday, February 27, 2009

Another shot at the Dukies

Virginia Tech (17-10, 7-6) vs. No. 7 Duke (23-5, 9-4)
Saturday, Feb. 28, 2009
Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, Va.
3:30 p.m. (ABC)

White Out conditions await the Duke Blue Devils Saturday in Cassell Coliseum. The Hokies will host the country's No. 7 team and fans will wear white shirts to raise money for Herma's Readers.

It's the second match-up between the Hokies and Blue Devils this season. Tech traveled to Cameron Indoor Stadium Jan. 4 and was humbled 69-44 on FSN. Tech never had a chance in the first game, as it shot 36.7 percent from the field and committed 18 turnovers to seven assists.

No Hokie played particularly well in that first match up. Malcolm Delaney led the team with 12 points, but did not have an assist and committed three turnovers. Cheick Diakite was solid, going 4-for-6 from the field for eight points with five rebounds.

The second half was especially forgettable for Tech, as it managed just 13 points. Tech had trimmed a 13-point Duke lead to eight at half before failing to answer the bell in the second half.

Tech has the momentum after a big road win over a ranked opponent earlier this week at Clemson. Duke is experimenting with a freshman point guard and will be without guard Nolan Smith, who suffered a concussion against Maryland.

In order for the Hokies to pull off another upset, they'll need a big game from Delaney both in points and in running the offense. He has to play at his highest level and make his teammates better. The Hokies aren't going to have a lot of success on the boards against Duke, so a high shooting percentage is crucial. The Hokies were out-rebounded 38-28 last time they played Duke.

The Hokies hope history repeats itself Saturday. In 2005, Tech traveled to Durham early in the year and were beaten by 35 points. The Hokies then stunned Duke 18 days later in Blacksburg.


I'll link to more Duke previews from various Hokie blogs as they are posted.

- Tech Hoops' keys to the game offers A LOT of sexual innuendo.

- The North End Zone deserves a slow clap.

- Bourbonstreet offers his unique perspective on the Duke game.

- C'mon people, CGB is in a hurry.

- Tar Heel Fan thinks the hoops team needs two more wins in the regular season or a run in the ACC tourney to make the field of 65.

- Doug gives props to two of Lynchburg's finest eateries.

- Hokie wrasslers now know where they need to place March 7 to make the NCAA tournament.

- Any chance last night was also Beth Dunkenberger's last home game as Tech's women's coach?


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the video. Never gets old. Good stuff.

The ACC and SEC Blog said...

I think Delaney will be key like you said - only 12 points in the last game, but Jeff Allen needs to have a good game too. Duke is not very big or athletic inside so Allen needs to take advantage for the Hokies to win.