UMES FALLS ON NEW YEARS EVE TO VIRGINIA TECH
Dec. 31, 2013
BLACKSBURG, Va. – For the first time in eight years, Head Coach Frankie Allen returned to Cassell Coliseum, but a homecoming win was not in the cards, as the University of Maryland Eastern Shore men’s basketball fell to Virginia Tech, 82-66, on New Years Eve. The game was seen before a national audience on ESPN3. With the loss, UMES drops to 2-9 on the year, while Virginia Tech improves to 8-5.
The contest between the two was a tale of two halves. After falling behind by 23 in the first half, UMES came out with vengeance in the last frame, as the Hawks shot 42-percent to outscore Virginia Tech by seven in the final 20 minutes of action. The deficit proved to be too large for the Hawks to overcome, though, as Virginia Tech held on for the 16-point win. UMES turned the ball over just one time in the second-half and senior Troy Snyder (Chicago, Ill.) had a season-high 15 points.
UMES jumped out to an early lead in the game as the men used a three by freshman Mark Blackmon (Charlotte, N.C.) and a free-throw by junior Ishaq Pitt (Brooklyn, N.Y.) to take a 4-2 lead two minutes into the game. Virginia Tech would go on a 13-2 run over the next four minutes to race out to its first big lead against UMES.
A layup by junior KyRee Jones (Indianapolis, Ind.) ended the run, before the teams traded baskets over the next several minutes. Virginia Tech went on its second big run of the day by scoring 10 of the game’s next 13 points to post a 17-point lead, 38-21, with 4:15 left in the first. The Hokies continued their strong play through the half as they held UMES to one basket through the final four minutes.
Jones led UMES with 10 points at half, but the Hawks were outrebounded 24-10 and only had two points off the bench, compared to VT’s 22. The Hokies shot 51-percent from the floor in the frame.
The Hawks deficit continued to grow to begin the second as the team found itself down by as many as 27 points several times. A three-pointer by VT’s Will Johnston made the score 70-43 with 8:50 remaining, but UMES scored seven answered points to bring the game within 20. The two teams would counter each other’s charge the rest of the way, though, as VT moved to 25-0 all-time against MEAC opponents. The Hawks have now lost 24 consecutive out-of-conference road contests.
Virginia Tech was paced by Jarell Eddie, who had a game-high 17 points with a trio of three-pointers. Devin Wilson was 7-for-8 from the line to tally 16 points, while C.J. Barksdale had nine points and six boards. Ben Emelogu dished out nine assists.
The team will continue its four-game road trip throughout the Southeast when the men travel to Starksville, Miss., to take on Mississippi State on Jan. 2 at 7 p.m. The matchup against the Bulldogs is the first for UMES against an SEC team in over a decade.
For complete recaps, results and news of Hawk athletics, please visit www.umeshawks.com