Dec. 3, 2009
Site: Blacksburg, Va. (Cassell Coliseum)
Score: Michigan 71, Virginia Tech 51
Records: U-M (5-2), Virginia Tech (4-3)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, Dec. 6 -- at Iowa (Iowa City, Iowa), 5 p.m. CST
BLACKSBURG, Va. -- Junior guard Veronica Hicks (Chicago, Ill./Thornwood) and freshman guard Dayeesha Hollins (Cincinnati, Ohio/Winton Woods) combined for 35 of U-M's 71 points to lead the University of Michigan women's basketball team to a 71-51 win over Virginia Tech in the annual Big Ten/ACC Challenge on Thursday (Dec. 3) in Virginia Tech's Cassell Coliseum.
The Wolverines had four players in double figures for the fourth time this season. Joining Hicks and Hollins in double digits were senior center Krista Phillips (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan/Aden Bowman Collegiate) with 12 points and sophomore forward Carmen Reynolds (Hilliard, Ohio/Davidson) with 10. Phillips led the way on the glass with a season-best eight rebounds.
U-M, which opened the second half with a lead for the third consecutive game, opened with a quick 4-0 run with baskets from Reynolds, who scored six of Michigan's first eight points of the half. Michigan built a 19-point lead, 43-24, at the 16:53 mark of the second half and never allowed the Hokies closer than 15 from that point on en route to the Wolverines' third consecutive Big Ten/ACC Challenge victory.
Michigan was nothing short of efficient in the second half, committing only six second-half turnovers and forcing Virginia Tech into nine turnovers. The Wolverine defense was just too stingy for the Hokies to overcome as Virginia Tech moved to 2-1 in Big Ten/ACC Challenge action. Nikki Davis led the way for the opposition with 11 points and was the only Hokie to score in double digits.
The Wolverines jumped out to an 8-0 lead behind two baskets from Hicks and a three-pointer from the right elbow by Reynolds. Virginia Tech got its first bucket of the night nearly five minutes into the game with a jumper in the paint, cutting the U-M lead to 8-2 at the 15:15 mark. Virginia Tech got a triple from Lindsey Biggs at the 14:15 mark, but the Wolverine defense was strong and held the Hokies without a field goal for more than six minutes, and during that time the Wolverines stretched their lead to 18-6. Virginia Tech's lone point was a free throw from Davis.
Three-point shooting was key for the Wolverines in the first half. U-M had back-to-back triples from Hicks and Hollins to pull Michigan ahead 24-9 at the 7:51 mark. The Hokies then forced U-M into several turnovers and cut the lead to 27-17 with just under four minutes remaining, but a three-pointer from freshman forward Sam Arnold (Medinah, Ill./Lake Park) and back-to-back Hokie turnovers kept the lead in double figures.
Virginia Tech tried to make things interesting down the stretch, cutting the lead to nine points on two occasions, but a jumper from Hollins as time expired sent the Wolverines into the halftime break with a double-digit lead, 33-22.
The Wolverines shot 44.4 percent from the floor and held Virginia Tech to just 27.6 percent on 8-of-29 shooting. Although the Hokies struggled from the floor, they made the most of their second chances, outscoring the Wolverines, 10-0, on second-chance opportunities.
The Wolverines open Big Ten action on Sunday (Dec. 6) when they head to Iowa City, Iowa, to take on the Iowa Hawkeyes. The game is a scheduled 5 p.m. CST tipoff and will be televised live on the Big Ten Network.
Contact: Jessica Poole (734) 763-4423