BLACKSBURG, Va. (Hokies Sports) - Virginia Tech lost to Louisville, 75-68, in ACC men’s basketball Saturday afternoon in Cassell Coliseum. With the loss, Tech drops to 20-9 overall and 9-7 in league play and the Cardinals improve to 19-10 overall and 9-7 in ACC action.
The teams each made runs in the first half and when Justin Robinson made a two-pointer at the buzzer, the teams entered the locker rooms knotted at 34-34. The two squads kept it close throughout the first 17 minutes of the second half, with neither team taking more than a four-point advantage. Darius Perry made a three-pointer with 2:22 remaining to give the Cardinals a 68-61 lead, which Tech could not overcome. Free throws stretched the UofL lead to nine points in the final seconds before Robinson scored on a lay-up with three seconds remaining to set the final at 75-68.
Tech outshot the Cardinals from the field, 44.1 percent to 42.9 percent, but the Cardinals held a 44-27 advantage on the glass, including 13 offensive rebounds. Louisville made three of four three-pointers in the final six minutes and finished the game 12 of 27 from beyond the arc.
“I would say for sure, three of the last six were late clock shots,” head coach Buzz Williams said about the late hot streak from three-point range for Louisville. “They were big shots. I thought that was the difference. We did a really good job defensively; we just didn’t finish the possession with a rebound enough. They shot 42 percent from the field, which includes their second chance points, which I would say they shot 80 percent. If you look at it from a football perspective, the time of possession specific to that would play a part. 21 percent of the time we forced them into a turnover. That’s great for a team as good as they are. We shot more balls than they did. We just couldn’t finish with a rebound.”
Robinson led the Hokies with 16 points and Kerry Blackshear Jr., added 14 points. Justin Bibbs scored 11 points, pushing his career total to 1,402 career points.