GREENSBORO, NC — The Virginia Tech Hokies won just two ACC games the entire season, and yet as the bottom seed in the ACC Tournament in Greensboro Tech already has half that many.
The Hokies lead late, then trailed after a Wake Forest three-pointer, then went back ahead on a Jalen Hudson layup; they finally survived a jumped and two point blank tip-in misses to defeat Wake Forest and move on to the tournament’s second day.
Virginia Tech will take on Miami Wednesday evening.
Here’s more information on the win, courtesy of the Atlantic Coast Conference:
Hudson, Hokies Sink Demon Deacons
Freshman scores 32 points, hits game-winner
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Freshman Jalen Hudson hit a jumper with 11.7 seconds left and Virginia Tech beat Wake Forest 81-80 on Tuesday in the first round of the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament.
Hudson finished with a season-best 32 points – the most by a Virginia Tech player in an ACC tournament game – for the 14th-seeded Hokies (11-21).
They shot 48 percent, committed a season-best four turnovers and withstood a final-seconds flurry from Wake Forest to snap a seven-game losing streak and earn their first ACC tournament win in three years.
Codi Miller-McIntyre had 23 points and 11 assists, and Devin Thomas added 22 points for the 11th-seeded Demon Deacons (13-19). They went up 80-79 on Dinos Mitoglou’s 3-pointer with 23.7 seconds left.
Virginia Tech called timeout and got the ball to Hudson, who drove the lane and banked in the go-ahead jumper in traffic.
Miller-McIntyre raced downcourt but lost the ball out of bounds as he was stripped by Hudson with 6.1 seconds left, and Wake Forest kept the ball after the officials reviewed the play.
Mitchell Wilbekin inbounded it to Mitoglou, whose jumper went off the rim. Thomas’ putback attempt caromed off the iron and so did Miller-McIntyre’s tip-in attempt as the horn sounded.
Ahmed Hill added 12 points for the Hokies, who let an 11-point lead slip away in the second half before recovering.
They will play sixth-seeded Miami (20-11) on Wednesday night in the second round, with that winner drawing third-seeded Notre Dame (26-5) in the quarterfinals Thursday night.
Cornelius Hudson had 14 points and hit four 3s while Mitoglou finished with 11 points and three 3s for Wake Forest, which trailed by five with less than a minute to play. Hudson’s 3 with 54.9 seconds remaining started that rally.
Virginia Tech: Hudson broke the school’s ACC tournament mark held by A.D. Vassallo, who scored 26 against North Carolina in the 2009 quarterfinals.
Wake Forest: For the third time in five years, the Demon Deacons finished winless away from Winston-Salem against ACC teams.
Virginia Tech: Plays Miami on Wednesday night in the second round of the ACC tournament.
Wake Forest: Season over.