@MiamiWBB Limits Va. Tech to 39 Points in Win
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The story of the University of Miami’s season has been defense—intense, ferocious defense.
The Hurricanes’ dominant performance in the first half against Virginia Tech Thursday night at the BankUnited Center was a tremendous display of exactly what they are capable of.
Miami put on a defensive clinic in the opening 20 minutes of a 42-39 win over the Hokies, holding them without a point for the final 11:40 of the session.
“I think we played everyone in the first half, and so when we closed out the first half I think we were fresher, we had fresher legs,” Miami head coach Katie Meier said of the long stretch without a Virginia Tech basket “. . . Good minutes off the bench really helped our defensive energy to end the half. So, that was huge for us.”
In the first frame, Miami held Virginia Tech to 4-of-29 (13.8 percent) shooting from the field, including 0-of-12 from three-point range. The Hurricanes forced the Hokies into 12 first half turnovers.
Miami (16-6, 6-3 ACC) limited Virginia Tech to a total of eight points in the first session. It was both in the paint and on the perimeter that Miami made its mark defensively, showing the type of strong defensive play that has been a staple of this team since game one.
The Hurricanes closed the opening 20 minutes on a 14-0 run and led 16-8 at the break.
“Suriya McGuire was everywhere, I thought she had incredible energy when we put her in the game,” Meier said of the run to end the first half. “We hit a couple shots, it got a little excited, then were able to add some of our presses and we turned them over a little bit during that run.”
The Virginia Tech (10-13, 1-9 ACC) scoreless streak finally ended early in the second half after Miami held the Hokies without a point for over 12 minutes.
The Hokies managed to tie the score twice in the second half, but the Hurricanes did not let them take the lead at any point.
A three-point play by Adrienne Motley gave the Hurricanes the lead for good with 2:44 remaining.
The Hurricanes limited Virginia Tech to 15-of-62 shooting (24.2 percent) from the field in the game and Hokies went 2-of-24 (8.3 percent) from beyond the arc. The field goal clip was the lowest of the season for Virginia Tech.
The 39 points were also the fewest that the Hokies have scored this season and their six assists equaled their 2014-15 low.
In the victory, Miami showed the ability to win against an ACC opponent in a game where its offense was not fully clicking.
“That game would have gone either way,” Meier said. “We hung in there and we kept battling on the defensive end.”
The win is Miami’s second over Virginia Tech this season and the Hurricanes held the Hokies to 45 or fewer points in both contests.
Adrienne Motley led all scorers with 16 points and she pulled down five rebounds as well. Redshirt junior guard Michelle Woods added eight points and equaled her career best with a team-high eight rebounds. Jassany Williams recorded four blocks in the win.
Sophomore guard Vanessa Panousis paced the Hokies with 12 points, but Miami limited her to 4-of-19 (21.1 percent) shooting. Freshman guard Rachel Camp, Virginia Tech’s leading scorer, was held without a point for the first time all season.
The Hurricanes will be back in action Sunday, Feb. 8 at 2:00 p.m. against Florida State at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center in Tallahassee, Fla.
MIAMI HURRICANES POSTGAME NOTES
- For the first time this season, Miami’s starting five was Adrienne Motley, Necole Sterling, Jessica Thomas, Jassany Williams, and Michelle Woods.
- Miami’s lead over Virginia Tech in the all-time series between the two teams is now 14-7 and the Hurricanes have won eight in a row.
- Katie Meier moves to 255-172 in her 14 seasons as a head coach.
- Meier now has a 179-127 record in 10 years at Miami.
- The Hurricanes previously defeated Virginia Tech this season, 62-45, in Blacksburg, Va. on Jan. 11.
- This is the second time Miami has held an opponent under 40 points this season and the fifth time to 45 or fewer.
- Michelle Woods made her first start of ACC play this season. Her last start came in the team’s final non-conference game (vs. LSU, 12/29/14).
- Woods’ eight rebounds matched her career best, which was also against Virginia Tech (2/3/13).
- Khaila Prather recorded multiple assists for the first time in her career. She also matched her career best with two blocks (previously done multiple times, most recently at Louisville, 1/25/15).
- Adrienne Motley and has now scored in double figures 19 times in 22 games this season and has posted 15-plus points on 17 occasions.
- Motley made the 50th start of her college career. She has started all but three games in her two years at Miami.
- Adrienne Motley also eclipsed 700 points as a Hurricane.
- Jassany Williams made the 200th field goal of her college career.
- With her four blocks in the game, Williams also passed Vicki Plowden for fifth most blocks in Miami history (109). In her full college career, which includes two years at Auburn, she has blocked 189 shots.
- Erykah Davenport surpassed 250 minutes played as a collegian.