Playing with just eight scholarship players, Virginia Tech saw an 18-point first half lead disappear before pulling out a 76-68 overtime victory against St. Bonaventure in Rochester, NY Thursday. Tech (7-4) played without Dorenzo Hudson and Cadarian Raines who were ruled out for the season earlier in the day, leaving them with just three options off the bench.
The Hokies came out strong in the first half, shooting a robust 52% from the field. The Hokies opened up an 18-point lead at 34-16, thanks primarily to the play of Erick Green. Making his third career start, Green wasted no time, accounting for 11 of his 15 points in the first 20 minutes, while also recording four steals. Jeff Allen also played well in the first half, recording just one foul.
However, the Bonnies closed the game to within 13 at the half and opened up the second half on a 13-4 run to cut the Tech lead to four. SBU nailed nine of its first 13 shots out of the gate, while Tech attempted just six shots. Also, Allen picked up three fouls in the first 7:30 of the half and was sent to the bench. The teams traded basket the rest of the half, with the Hokies’ lead varying between two and six. The Bonnies couldn’t ever tie or take the lead, though, until point guard Ogo Adegboye nailed an NBA range three-pointer with 18 seconds to go to tie the game at 65. Malcolm Delaney’s last second shot missed everything.
Thankfully, Tech dominated the overtime session, outscoring the Bonnies 11-3, including six straight to end the contest. With Allen fouling out late in regulation, Manny Atkins came up huge, scoring all five of his points including a three-pointer to open up the frame. The Hokies also benefited from SBU’s leading scorer, Andrew Nicholson, falling to cramps in the last two minutes.
Green continued his hot play since entering the starting five, tying his career high with 15 points in 43 minutes of action. Since moving into a starting role against Penn State, the sophomore from Winchester, VA has averaged 13.7 points, 2.7 steals, and 0 turnovers per game. With the loss of Hudson for the season, his performance could dictate how far this team goes.
Delaney led Tech once again with 19 points, despite shooting 5-for-15 from the field. The senior did add 7-of-8 from the free throw line for the Hokies. Allen fouled out of his fifth game this season, but still managed to score 18 points and grab nine rebounds in 30 minutes.
The Bonnies got all 68 of their points from their starters including 21 from Nicholson and 17 from Adegboye.
Tech now gets a chance to enjoy the holiday weekend with family before returning to action next Thursday against USC-Upstate in Blacksburg. Tip-off on December 30 is set for 2 p.m.