VMI hangs tough, but fall as Hokies stay undefeated

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The Virginia Tech Hokies took on The Virginia Military Institute in Blacksburg. The Hokies, ranked 16th in the nation coming into the game are undefeated. VMI, comes in with a 2-1 record, averaging 79.33 points per game. Virginia Tech came out a bit sluggish, not scoring their first points until 15:55 left on the clock. VMI started the game a little warmer, scoring the games first four points, until Bede sank a three to end the Hokie drought.

Keve Aluma, the ACC player of the week, started off the game being the main focal point of the Keydets defense by double teaming him on every offensive possession. The Hokies took the lead on Justyn ‘No Mutts’ November after making his third shot on the same possession, going up 5-4. VMI came right back down and sank a three right down the Hokies gullet, retaking the lead 7-5. VMI and the Hokies went back and forth until the Hokies took the lead 11-9. Keve Aluma helped make this happen with an amazing block, leading to a fast break with Tyrece Radford getting to the line. 12 minutes into the game and both teams are playing good defense and terrible offense. VMI was 6-19 while the Hokies were 4-18. VMI took the lead, getting up 13-11 with a layup.The Hokies continued to suck from the stripe, being 3 for their first 6, being down 13-12. Aluma must have read this before it came out because he sank both free throws to get the Hokies back on top, 14-13. VMI continued their great start in Blacksburg, coming down the floor and shoving another three down the Hokie gullet, taking a 16-14 lead. The Hokies went on a 6-0 run, being more aggressive, and taking the lead, 20-16 with four minutes left to go in the first half. The Hokies continued the hot play with Jalen Cone sinking his first three of the season, 23-16. The Hokies had their 12-0 run end with a made shot by the Keydets to get back within single digits, 26-18. The first half ended with a floater by VMI to get within 7, 30-23, Hokies have the lead.

Jake Stevens of VMI started off the second half sinking a three to pull within 4, 30-26. The Hokies first possession ended with an offensive foul, giving the ball back to VMI. With each passing game, it seems like the Hokies are relying more and more on Aluma and he continues to deliver on both ends of the floor. The Hokies came out hot, making three of their first four shots, taking the lead 36-28. VMI was able to stay in the game, making their free throws and playing good defense, forcing the Hokies to take contested shots. While playing great defense, VMI continued to take threes, and it was working, by getting within four. The Hokies, with 14:48 left in the game, the Hokies, from three, are shooting 3-20. Yikes. Mike Young took a big timeout as VMI tied the Hokies, going on a 10-0 run. The Hokies looked lost and a perfect time for Mike Young to get his team back in rhythm. They did not get in rhythm. VMI took their lead for the first time since the early first half, taking a 3 point lead, 39-36. Hunter “I hardly know her” came down and shoved a three in VMI’s face to tie the game, 39-39. VMI continued to turn their great defense into offense, taking a 41-39 lead. The Hokies scored their 4th and 5th point within an 8:30 period to tie the game, 41-41 with Tyrece Radford’s free throws. VMI took a three point leave with a corner three from Trey Bonham, 44-41. VMI, up four, fouled Tyrece Radford, who shot two from the free throw line. Making both, to pull within two, 45-43. Bede picks a Keydets pocket, has patience and hands the ball to Mutts to tie this game at 45 with a monster jam (not to be confused with the monster trucks). Wabissa Bede with a beautiful cut, to get the Hokies to take the lead 47-45 to continue this 6-0 run. Tyrece Radford with a HUGE and 1 to get the Hokies up 4, with the free throw to come. Radford sinks the free throw, 9-0 Hokies run, getting the Hokies up 50-45. VMI just would not go away, taking a time out and coming out to get within three. Bede takes another shot, misses, but offensively cleaned up by Aluma, getting to the line after collecting the rebound. Naheim Alleyne created his own opportunity, driving to the hoop and getting an and one getting up six points, 53-47 going into the last television time out of the game. Myles Lewis, completed his double double, by sinking both his free throws to pull VMI within four with 3:45 to go. The Hokies and Keydets trade layups, with the Hokies still up 4, 55-51. Mutts saved his best two possessions for the end of the game, with the latter slamming home a missed Tyrece Radford layup to pull away from VMI, 57-51. Hokies up 7, playing a little lackadaisical , take the shot clock down to 0 with a terrible shot, VMI comes down the floor, sinks a three to pull within 4, 59-55 with 48 seconds to play. ALUUMAAA Hammers it home more than a step-father on one of those x-rated sites, pulling the game out of reach for VMI, 62-55. The Hokies win a game that was a lot closer than anticipated to stay undefeated, 64-57.

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