Florida State defeats Virginia Tech 70-50 at home
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Aaron Thomas hit a career-high six 3-pointers and scored 24 points to lead Florida State to a 70-50 victory over Virginia Tech in Atlantic Coast Conference action. The Seminoles broke a season-high three-game losing streak in the process.
Thomas warmed up in the second half with a stretch of three consecutive 3-pointers to give Florida State a 15-point lead. Okaro White finished with 15 points and eight rebounds as the Seminoles (14-8, 5-5 ACC) played without leading scorer Ian Miller (ankle).
Will Johnston scored 12 points for Virginia Tech (8-14, 1-9) while Cadarian Raines added 13. The Hokies entered the game as the worst shooting team in the conference with a field goal percentage of 37.3 in conference play. They shot 34 percent in the loss.
Virginia Tech has lost nine consecutive games.
Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton changed the starting lineup Wednesday, sitting point guard Devon Bookert and center Bojanovsky in favor of Aaron Thomas and Michael Ojo. The start was Ojo's first of the year and the second for Thomas. Miller sprained his ankle in a loss to Clemson last week.
The lineup change - and a slower pace - equated to the Hokies missing more shots (12) than Florida State attempted (10) in the first 11 ½ minutes of the game. Field goal attempts, however, didn't matter against struggling Virginia Tech
The Hokies shot 29 percent in the first half and trailed 31-20 at halftime.
Florida State used a 9-2 run to the close the first half and extended its largest lead of the game to 11. The run was keyed by the rare five-point play when Montay Brandon hit a 3-pointer as Jarquez Smith was fouled near the basket. Smith then hit both free throws.
Thomas buried three consecutive three-point baskets early in the second half, the last with a hand in his face, to bump the Florida State lead to 15. The Hokies had cut the lead to nine, but didn't have enough offense to hang around.
Virginia Tech finished with 15 more field goal attempts, but Florida State shot 43.5 percent from the field. The Hokies have lost 11-of-12 haven't won a game in 2014.
"We didn't play as smart as we need to," Virginia Tech coach James Johnson said. "They were just a little overmatched.
"(Thomas), he was the difference in the game tonight."
No. 25 Pittsburgh beats Miami 59-55 in OT
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) - Miami missed five consecutive free throws in the final 3 minutes of regulation before Manu Lecomte made one with 7 seconds left to send the game to overtime. That's where Pittsburgh's Lamar Patterson took over, scoring 10 of his 25 points to lead the 25th-ranked Panthers to a 59-55 victory over the Hurricanes on Wednesday
"If we were able to cash in on those it would have been a much different ending," Miami coach Jim Larranaga said of the five missed free throws.
Rion Brown, who led Miami with 21 points, missed two free throws during the key stretch.
"If me, Garrius (Adams), and Manu hit some free throws, the game's over," Brown said.
Patterson knocked down a 3-pointer, made a layup, and converted 5 of 6 from the free throw line in the extra 5 minutes for the Panthers (19-4, 7-2 Atlantic Coast Conference), who were coming off home losses to Duke and Virginia.
"Being a senior leader I didn't want to just become a ghost when it came to overtime," Patterson said. "My team looked to me and I just wanted to come through for them."
"A good win for us on the road," Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon said. "Every ACC win is a great one and we're excited about it."
Cameron Wright added 12 points and nine rebounds and Talib Zanna chipped in 10 points for Pittsburgh.
"It's been a last couple of tough games and we were able to duke it out this game," Wright said.
Adams had 10 points for Miami (11-11, 2-7), which has lost four of five.
Both teams shot under 35 percent in the game as Pittsburgh made 18 of 54 shots (33.3 percent) and Miami shot 34.6 percent on 18-for-52 shooting.
Pittsburgh led 29-28 at halftime and neither team scored in the first 5 minutes of the second half.
"I think both teams were playing very conservatively in trying to get something going and the defense was pretty good," Larranaga said.
Pittsburgh went up 37-30, their largest lead of the game, on a layup by Josh Newkirk, but Miami responded with a 12-4 run to take the lead.
Miami appeared to have momentum, but went just 1 for 6 from the free throw line in the closing minutes.
Patterson's free throw with 1:35 left in regulation gave Pittsburgh a 44-42 lead, but Brown countered with a 3-pointer.
Patterson followed with a driving layup from the left wing for a one-point lead with 13.1 seconds left. Lecomte made the second of two free throws with 7 seconds left in regulation to tie the game at 46.
The overtime began with Brown and Patterson, a pair of seniors, trading 3-pointers.
"Seniors are supposed to step up and when it comes to crunch time, younger guys look to you when the game gets tight," Patterson said. "He came through for his team, but fortunately we came up with the W."
Patterson made one of two free throws to make it 57-55 with 10.6 seconds left.
Brown had his pass to the corner tipped as he drove to the basket and it went to Patterson, who made two free throws to seal the victory.
"That was either James (Robinson) or Cam who poked it out of there and I had seen the ball flying so it was my opportunity to go grab it and luckily it came right to me," Patterson said.
No. 20 Virginia handles Boston College 77-67
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) - With a lead that grew to 21 points early in the second half, Malcolm Brogdon never expected to have to make meaningful free throws at the end for No. 20 Virginia against Boston College on Wednesday night.
That he did was part credit to the Eagles, and part Virginia going into cruise control too early.
"I think we did just a little bit and that's as soon as they started getting shots up and making shots," Brogdon said after he had 17 points, a career-best 11 rebounds and seven assists in the Cavaliers' 77-67 victory.
"We started going under screens and made a few uncharacteristic errors on defense."
In the end, on a night when he teammates were 11 of 25 at the free throw line, Brogdon wrapped up an 8-for-9 effort at the line by making all four of his attempts in the final minute, the last two with 36 seconds left and BC having closed within 73-67.
Until a 17-4 flurry at the end by the Eagles, Virginia seemed ready to coast to its sixth consecutive victory. They used runs of 15-0 and 20-8 in the first half to take charge, and built their lead to 21 points, the last time at 56-35 with 10:51 to go.
Eagles coach Steve Donahue was pleased with his team's effort, but was also impressed with Virginia.
"Tony and his guys have done an incredible job of developing this team individually, collectively, physically, skill-wise," he said of Cavaliers coach Tony Bennett. "It's just real impressive what they do and I admire it."
He said he's perhaps most impressed that Joe Harris, a first-team All-ACC player last season, has been willing to allow Brogdon, and other teammates, to assume more of the scoring load on nights when they have it going.
"What I admire is that Joe Harris, who I think is a terrific player, is willing to take a back seat at times and go from 19 points a game to 11 points a game.," Donahue said. "That makes them dangerous. ... In this day and age when kids worry about stats so much, it just doesn't seem that this team worries about how it gets done, and that makes them dangerous."
Anthony Gill and Justin Anderson added 13 points each for the Cavaliers (18-5, 9-1 Atlantic Coast Conference). Virginia led 40-21 at halftime and never let its margin dip below 13 until the final minutes.
Fouls were an issue as the officials called 31 in the second half, including numerous whistles for hand-checking.
"I don't think we adjusted well," Gill said. "We just kept fouling and it really threw us off our game."
Ryan Anderson scored 20 points to lead the Eagles (6-16, 2-7), who lost for the ninth time in 11 games. Their only two victories in that stretch have both come against last-place Virginia Tech.
Gill's layup sparked a 15-0 burst early in the game, allowing the Cavaliers to pull away from a 5-all tie. After BC scored eight straight to get within 20-13, Virginia closed the half with a 20-8 spree.
The victory continued Virginia's best start in the conference since the 1981-82 team won 12 of its first 13 games, but not before the Eagles made it interesting with a flurry of late scoring.
Trailing 69-50, they scored 17 of the next 21 points, closing to 73-67 with 57 seconds left on Garland Owens' 3-pointer. Brogdon was quickly fouled, and he made both shots as Virginia held on.
The game was the Cavaliers' first since a 3-pointer by Brogdon in the closing seconds lifted them to a 48-45 victory at No. 18 Pittsburgh, a triumph that vaulted Virginia back into the Top 25 for the first time since the opening weeks of the season.
They took command quickly, in part by shooting 50 percent (17 of 34) from the field before halftime, and by turning 10 offensive rebounds into 16 second-chance points. The Eagles, meanwhile, shot just 39 percent in the first half and were outrebounded 24-11. Virginia turned its five turnovers into 11 points.