Sunday, February 10, 2013

Draining loss: Virginia Tech runs out of gas against Georgia Tech

Exhausted guard Erick Green had to be carried off the court as Georgia Tech beat Virginia Tech.

Virginia Tech guard Erick Green (11) is helped off the court by teammates in the closing seconds Saturday and was treated for dehydration following the Hokies' 64-54 loss to Georgia Tech in Blacksburg. Virginia Tech suffered its sixth-straight loss.

Photos by DANIEL LIN | Special to The Roanoke Times

Virginia Tech guard Erick Green (11) is helped off the court by teammates in the closing seconds Saturday and was treated for dehydration following the Hokies' 64-54 loss to Georgia Tech in Blacksburg. Virginia Tech suffered its sixth-straight loss.

Virginia Tech forward Jarell Eddie (left) attempts to block a shot by Georgia Tech forward Marcus Georges-Hunt (right) on Saturday. Eddie went scoreless in the ACC loss.

Virginia Tech forward Jarell Eddie (left) attempts to block a shot by Georgia Tech forward Marcus Georges-Hunt (right) on Saturday. Eddie went scoreless in the ACC loss.

"He was out of gas … and out of fumes. He's having to do so much for this team … and it caught up with him," said Hokies coach James Johnson of senior guard Erick Green (middle).

Virginia Tech's Erick Green (right) is defended by Georgia Tech's Chris Bolden (left) on Saturday. The play resulted in a held ball.

Virginia Tech's Erick Green (right) is defended by Georgia Tech's Chris Bolden (left) on Saturday. The play resulted in a held ball.

Virginia Tech Hokies basketball

Berman Courtside

Georgia Tech 64, Virginia Tech 54

BLACKSBURG -- It was fitting that frisbee-catching dogs were the halftime entertainment Saturday.

Because the home team turned in a dog of a performance in the first half.

Virginia Tech mustered just 18 first-half points en route to a 64-54 loss to Georgia Tech at Cassell Coliseum.

The last-place Hokies (11-12, 2-8 ACC), who suffered their sixth straight defeat, trailed by as many as 22 points in the first half and by as many as 25 in the second.

Erick Green carried the Hokies as best he could -- to the point of exhaustion.

The point guard had 28 points, five rebounds, three assists, two blocks, two turnovers and one steal.

Green had to go to the bench with 31 seconds remaining. He was helped off the court by two teammates at game's end and was treated for dehydration at the arena after the game before going home.

"He didn't have any energy [by game's end]," Tech coach James Johnson said. "He was out of gas ... and out of fumes. He had nothing in the tank.

"He's having to do so much for this team ... and it caught up with him."

Green was given fluids after the game, but not intravenously.

"I talked to his mom for a second -- she said he'll be all right," said Robert Brown, who had 10 points. "He's just tired, exhausted. He played his [butt] off the entire game."

It was the third time in six games that Green outscored the rest of his team combined.

Green had 12 of Virginia Tech's 18 first-half points. He finished the game 9 of 20 from the field; the rest of his team was 10 of 42 combined.

"You can't stop him," Georgia Tech coach Brian Gregory said. "He can get his shot any time he wants.

"He's the player of the year in this league."

Not only did Virginia Tech lose the game, but one of its players lost his cool.

Early in the second half, Jarell Eddie complained to an official after being called for his third foul and was taken out of the game by Johnson. Once he got to the bench, Eddie slammed his water bottle to the floor -- causing water and ice to spill onto the court.

"He let his play frustrate him," Johnson said. "He made a mistake."

Brown slipped in the water. The game was stopped while Cassell workers mopped the floor.

"Was that strategically planned, like the lights out [at the Super Bowl]?" Gregory joked. "There was a couple [ice cubes] that were all the way down the court."

Johnson never put Eddie back in the game. But Johnson does not intend to hold him out of Tuesday's game at Virginia.

Eddie, who was 1 of 8 from the field in Thursday's loss to Maryland, was 0 of 6 from the field Saturday.

"I know how he feels, going out there and being frustrated," said Brown, who was 4 of 16 from the field with four turnovers.

The Hokies entered the game tied for last place in the ACC with Georgia Tech and Boston College. They have now lost at home to both those teams by double digits. They have also lost at home to a bad Southern Conference team (Georgia Southern).

Georgia Tech (13-8, 3-7), which won on an opponent's floor for the first time this season, jumped to an 11-1 lead.

With the game tipping off just 38 hours after the loss to Maryland ended, the Hokies missed their first 10 shots before Green made a layup with 12:52 left in the first half.

"We didn't have it in our legs," Johnson said. "I was worried that we'd come out like that after how much energy we had to put into that last game and then the quick turnaround."

Virginia Tech fell behind 31-10, making just three of its first 23 shots.

The Hokies shot 20.7 percent from the field in the half and trailed 37-18 at halftime.

"We've just got to come ready to play at a 1 o'clock tip," Brown said.

The Yellow Jackets had been 0-7 in Blacksburg.

Cadarian Raines was 3 of 11 from the field for the Hokies, who shot a season-low 30.6 percent from the field. They have shot worse than 40 percent in four of their past five games.

Virginia Tech went on a 15-1 run to cut the lead to 48-37 with 10:21 to go. But the Hokies missed their next four shots, and Robert Carter Jr. then made a 3-pointer to extend the lead.

Johnson gave his team an angry postgame lecture.

"He feels like some guys didn't give all they had at the end," Brown said.

This is the Hokies' longest skid since they lost 10 in a row in 2001-02.

GEORGIA TECH (13-9)

Georges-Hunt 5-11 2-2 13, Carter 2-7 2-3 7, Miller 3-9 1-2 7, Udofia 1-9 4-7 7, Bolden 2-6 0-0 5, Reed 3-6 2-4 9, Holsey 6-8 1-4 13, Poole 1-3 0-0 3. Totals 23-59 12-22 64.

VIRGINIA TECH (11-12)

Raines 3-11 0-2 6, Eddie 0-6 0-0 0, Barksdale 0-2 1-2 1, Brown 4-16 0-1 10, Green 9-20 8-9 28, Van Zegeren 0-0 0-0 0, Patrick 0-0 0-0 0, Rankin 0-0 0-0 0, Johnston 2-6 0-0 6, Wood 1-1 0-0 3. Totals 19-62 9-14 54.

Halftime-Georgia Tech 37-18. 3-Point Goals-Georgia Tech 6-17 (Georges-Hunt 1-2, Reed 1-2, Poole 1-3, Carter 1-3, Bolden 1-3, Udofia 1-4), Virginia Tech 7-20 (Green 2-5, Brown 2-5, Johnston 2-5, Wood 1-1, Eddie 0-4). Fouled Out-None. Rebounds-Georgia Tech 49 (Carter, Georges-Hunt, Holsey 9), Virginia Tech 35 (Raines 9). Assists-Georgia Tech 13 (Bolden, Reed 4), Virginia Tech 8 (Green 3). Total Fouls-Georgia Tech 18, Virginia Tech 17. A-6,006.

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