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Tech men's basketball looking to break losing streak

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Posted: Thursday, January 30, 2014 5:45 pm

The Virginia Tech men’s basketball team’s season is in disarray as they search for a seemingly elusive win to spark some excitement around the team. They will look to turn things around in a game versus the 12-9 Maryland Terrapins Saturday at Cassell Coliseum.

The Hokies suffered their seventh straight loss Wednesday night. The Hokies were downed by Boston College for a second time this season, this time by a score of 76-52, dropping them to 8-12 on the season and 1-7 in ACC play.

Senior forward Jarell Eddie racked up a double-double, leading the team with 23 points and 10 rebounds. Eddie scored 19 first half points but the Hokies fell flat in the second half, scoring only 19 points as a team and matching Eddie’s first half performance.

Meanwhile, fellow senior forward Cadarian Raines saw limited action once again, playing only eight minutes in the entire game and scoring just two points.

With freshman guard Adam Smith still out with injury issues and freshman guard Ben Emelogu returning, the Hokies’ starting lineup shuffled once again as Emelogu got the start. The young team captain accounted for eight points, two assists and two steals while seeing 32 minutes of action.

Coming off a career high 26 points versus Wake Forest, freshman guard Devin Wilson barely saw any rest once again, playing 38 minutes.

After that Wake Forest game, head coach James Johnson was effusive in his praise of Wilson.

“I’m speechless with the way he’s playing,” Johnson said. “He just keeps getting better and better.”

But against the Eagles, Wilson struggled and was only able to put up five points.

The inability to shoot the ball plagued Tech yet again, as they shot only 34 percent from the field and 57.1 percent from the free throw line.

BC was able to take advantage of the Hokies’ mishandling of the basketball, scoring 24 points off of turnovers. Tech’s defense also struggled, as it allowed four Boston College players to put up double digits.

These are the same struggles that have plagued the Hokies throughout their seven game losing streak.

“We just didn’t play well defensively and with that we’re not going to beat teams,” Eddie said after the loss to Wake Forest.

The Hokies will have to rectify those issues if they want to beat the Terrapins Sunday.

The Terrapins come into the game averaging 72.4 points per game and are led by junior Dez Wells, who’s averaging nearly 15 points and five rebounds a game. Wells hit a clutch three-pointer to lift Maryland over the Miami Hurricanes this past Wednesday night.

Statistically, the two teams match up fairly well. Both teams average around 70 points and are giving up about 69 points a game. But momentum is on Maryland’s side as the Hokies’ downward spiral continues.

The Terrapins present a tough contest for Tech as the Hokies haven’t beaten them since Feb. 15, 2010.

Tech must develop some type of consistency and cohesiveness if they want to end the season on a high note. The Hokies need someone to step up in the midst of this unsuccessful season.

Whether it is seniors Eddie and Raines or one of the many talented freshmen, someone must emerge as a leader. If it doesn’t start on Saturday against Maryland, then the season might be too far gone.

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