BLACKSBURG, Va. – After struggling to begin the game, the Virginia Tech women’s basketball team made a late second-half run to defeat the New Jersey Institute of Technology, 67-51, on Tuesday night in the 20th annual Hilton Garden Classic at Cassell Coliseum.
“It took us a little while to get going tonight,” Tech head coach Beth Dunkenberger said. “It’s hard when you match up with a team that’s got five guards on the court a lot of the time. But late in the game, we got our defense squared away the way it needed to be, and that’s when we made our big run.”
Tech missed its first five field-goal attempts and fell behind 9-2 early on, but slowly chipped away and took its first lead, 20-19, at the 6:16 mark of the first half.
NJIT hung around and trailed 46-43 with just under eight minutes to play in the second half, but that’s when Tech exploded for 10 unanswered points to pull away for good. The Hokies finished the game on a 21-8 run, improving their season record to 8-4 with the win. NJIT dropped to 3-8 with the loss.
Despite hitting just one of its 14 3-point attempts, the Hokies finished the game 30-of-63 for 47.6 percent, including a mark of 55.2 percent in the second half. The lone made 3-pointer was the 158th of senior Lindsay Biggs’ career, and she now sits alone in second place on Tech’s all-time list in that category. She passed Sarah Hicks (1997-2002) and now has her sights set on school leader Carrie Mason’s 200 made treys from 2002-06.
Fellow senior Utahya Drye recorded her seventh career double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while freshman Porschia Hadley added 10 and six. Redshirt junior Nikki Davis dished out a career-high eight assists.
Taiwo Oyelola paced NJIT with 16 points.
The Hokies will look to reclaim the tournament title on Wednesday night when they take on Charlotte, which defeated Central Connecticut State in the opening game on Tuesday. Tech had won 11 consecutive home holiday tournaments prior to last year. Tip-off for that game is set for 7 p.m., while the consolation game between NJIT and CCSU will start at 5 p.m.
For updates on Virginia Tech women's basketball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_WBBall).