BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) -- Coleman Collins scored 20 points and
surprising Virginia Tech started the second half with a 23-10 run
and held on to beat Virginia 79-73 in the schools' first conference
meeting in 68 years.
The Hokies (11-6, 4-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) led 60-44 after
the burst with just 11:28 to play and pandemonium reigning in
Cassell Coliseum. But the Cavaliers used an immediate 10-2 run to
cut the deficit in half and got to within 74-71 with 1:46 left
before turning the ball over, and the Hokies did just enough to win
its fifth consecutive game.
Virginia (10-7, 1-6) lost for the fifth time in six games.
Smith hit four 3-pointers and was open in the left corner when
J.R. Reynolds threw a bullet pass his way with the Cavaliers down
74-71, but the ball went through Smith's hands and Virginia scored
just once more.
The game was the 119th between the schools, but the first as
conference rivals since both were in the Southern Conference in
1936-37. The victory was just the second in the last eight meetings
for the Hokies.
They did it with what has become their standard under
second-year coach Seth Greenberg -- attacking on offense, but
unselfishly, taking care of the ball on defense and ball-hawking in
passing lanes all the time.
Virginia Tech had 12 steals and only 11 turnovers, half as many
miscues as the Cavaliers, and turned the takeaways into 18 points.
The Hokies took their biggest lead of the first half at 34-24 on
Collins' inside basket with 3:40 left, but Smith scored eight of
his 13 first-half points in a 10-3 Virginia run that made it 37-34