Second-half comeback not enough, as the Hokies fall to Miami at home

Miami (17-5, 6-4) 444084
Virginia Tech (16-7, 5-5) 324375
  • Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, Va. - 9,275
  • High Points: 22 - Justin Robinson
  • High Rebounds: 7 - P.J. Horne, Chris Clarke

BLACKSBURG – Virginia Tech guard Justin Robinson scored 22 points, but it wasn’t enough, as Miami grabbed the early lead and held on to it en route to an 84-75 ACC victory over the Hokies on Saturday at Carilion Clinic Court.

Tech fell to 16-7 overall, 5-5 in the ACC, and saw its’ three-game winning streak snapped. Miami moved to 17-5, 6-4 in the ACC.

Behind torrid first-half shooting — 58.6 percent (17 of 29) — Miami grabbed the lead and held it for the final 37 minutes. Tech used an 8-0 run to slice the lead to 66-63 on a layup by Robinson with 3:51 remaining, but the Lonnie Walker IV hit a clutch 3-pointer with 3:22 to go to push the lead to 69-63.

Robinson scored on another layup with 3:03 to go to trim the lead to 69-65, but Walker answered again. His tough turnaround jumper with 2:46 left push the lead to six, and Virginia Tech got no closer than four the rest of the way, as Miami made 9 of 12 from the free-throw line in the final 1:16.

“I don’t think, collectively, we played hard enough,” Virginia Tech coach Buzz Williams said. “We don’t have a margin to overcome lack of toughness, lack of playing hard.”

Anthony Lawrence II scored a career-high 25 points and grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds for the ’Canes, who won their second straight and for the fourth time in their past five outings. He hit 9 of 10 from the floor, including three 3-pointers. Lonnie Walker IV and DJ Vasiljevic added 14 points each.

Robinson hit 8 of 13 from the floor, including two 3-pointers and all four of his free-throw attempts. Justin Bibbs added 16 points.


• Robinson scored in double figures for the 10th straight time and the team-best 17th time this season. He has scored in double figures in all 10 ACC games this season.

• Bibbs passed Les Henson into 22nd place in career scoring at Tech. He now has 1,339 career points.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker scored 15 points. It marked his 12th game in double figures this season.

P.J. Horne grabbed a career-high seven rebounds. He also played a career-high 23 minutes.

• Tech hit at least eight 3-pointers in a game for the eight straight game.

• For just the third time this season, the Hokies allowed an opponent to shoot better than 50 percent.

• The Hokies’ minus-13 in rebounding was tied for its largest deficit on the boards this season (Syracuse).


The Hokies play NC State on Wednesday at Carilion Clinic Court. The game tips off at 9 p.m.

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