Saturday, December 1, 2012

Hokies Basketball Team Upsets #15 Oklahoma State

"With the win, the Hokies moved to 7-0 overall on the season, which marks their best start since the 1982-83 team won its first seven games to start the season."
Erick Green scored 28 points and hit eight critical free throws in the final 76 seconds as Virginia Tech continued its surprising start under new coach James Johnson, beating the No. 15 Cowboys (5-1) for the fourth time in the past three seasons.

The last three meetings were in preseason tournaments in 2010 and 2011, and a scheduled game Dec. 31, 2011 in Stillwater.

"He's one of the best guards in the country, one of the best point guards in the county, bar none," Oklahoma State's coach Travis Ford said of Green, who did all his scoring and grabbed seven rebounds in just 26 minutes after drawing two fouls in the first three minutes.

The Hokies, picked to finish 10th in the ACC, are off to their first 7-0 start since the 1982-83 season, and their victory was their first nonconference triumph against a ranked team since they beat Virginia in December 1995 at Roanoke Coliseum.

"I think people were sleeping on us because of the coaching change and because of the players that left," Green, the Hokies' lone senior, said. "But I hope that we've shown people we can play with anybody and that we're a great team."

"We've got to keep it going. Consistency is the key," Green said.

Robert Brown added 18 points and Jarell Eddie had 15 with 12 rebounds for the Hokies, who outrebounded the taller, more athletic Cowboys 41-31 and scored 22 points off their 13 offensive rebounds. The victory finished a week that started with a 95-79 blowout of Iowa in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge, a game that many viewed as their first real test of the year.

"Coach Johnson told us that we could do anything we wanted if we put our mind to it as a team, and everyone is putting their minds to one game at a time and winning that game," Brown, a sophomore guard, said. "We've done it so far."

Le'Bryan Nash and Marcus Smart scored 18 each to lead the Cowboys (5-1).

He finished the game having made 51 of his last 53 from the line.

Green played only nine minutes in the first half after drawing two quick fouls, but still scored 10 points in his time. He also scored the Hokies' first 10 points of the second half on a pair of 3-pointers, two free throws and a long fadeaway.

"Even the guys told me they were going to feed off me and that I was going to have a big second half," Green said. "I had a challenge in front of me and wanted to show people that I could play with the best. Hopefully, I showed people that."

Erick Green

NOV 12: "Green tied his career high with 25 points to lift the Hokies past Rhode Island 69-50 in a nonconference game played Monday night at Cassell Coliseum."

NOV 15: "Green scored 23 points, including the 1,000th of his career, as the Hokies rolled past VMI 95-80 in a nonconference game Thursday night at Cassell Coliseum."

NOV 26: "Green has been named the ACC Co-Player of the Week, for the week ending Nov. 25. The honor was selected by a panel of media members in the ACC region.

Green, a senior from Winchester, Va., led the 5-0 Hokies to a pair of victories this past week, recording career-highs in scoring in both games. In a 96-87 win at UNCG Monday, Green scored a career-high 26 points and had six assists. Against Appalachian State on Friday, Green posted a new career-high with 27 points and handed out four assists in an 87-76 victory. He has scored at least 20 points in all five games this season and leads the ACC in scoring, at 24.4 points per game.

This is the first time Green has won the honor and the first time a Hokie has won the award since Dorenzo Hudson was named the Player of the Week the week of Nov. 21, 2011."

DEC 1: "Green scored more than 20 points for the seventh straight game to start the season – something no Tech player has done since Bimbo Coles opened the 1989-90 season by scoring 20 or more in the first nine games."

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