BLACKSBURG, Va. – Most coaches are happy after a victory, but following Virginia Tech's 18-point win over Longwood, Hokies coach Seth Greenberg expressed only relief.
"I'm just happy it's over," Greenberg said. "I'm happy no one got hurt. I'm happy we scored more points than them. That's about all I'm happy with."
Malcolm Delaney helped Virginia Tech continue its winning ways, scoring 23 points to lift the Hokies past Longwood 70-52 on Saturday night. It was the Hokies' ninth victory in their past 10 games.
The Hokies (13-5) trailed for most of the first 10 minutes, but they closed the first half with a 19-4 run, erasing a five-point deficit to take a 29-19 lead at halftime. The Lancers missed 10 of their final 11 attempts from the floor in the first half.
Longwood (7-15) got as close as five in the second half, 38-33, on a basket by Aaron Mitchell with 12:37 remaining. But the Hokies outscored the Lancers 29-9 over the next 8 minutes to take control, with Delaney scoring 10 in that stretch.
"They have good players and they made some plays, and we didn't," Longwood coach Mike Gillian said. "No matter who you're playing or what the circumstances are, you've got to stop the other guys from scoring, or if they're scoring, then you need to keep pace. We missed some opportunities and we weren't able to keep up, basically."
The game marked the second in a 48-hour span for Virginia Tech, which won at Maryland on Thursday. The Hokies returned home to face the Lancers and came out sluggish against a team that stood at No. 327 in the RPI out of 345 teams heading into the game.
"Our kids are tired," Greenberg said. "We've had back-to-back weeks with turnaround games (playing Thursday and Saturday). They're just tired. They were emotional and invested a lot in the game on Thursday (a win at Maryland). Taking nothing away from them (Longwood) because they played really hard, but we didn't have any energy. You could see that in the beginning."
Delaney connected on just 6 of 14 shots from the floor, but hit 10 of 12 from the free-throw line. He needs just 42 points to eclipse the 2,000-point mark for his career.
"We missed some easy looks and had some unforced turnovers," Delaney said. "We could have put them away earlier. But we're going to have games like this and we haven't had one in a while."
Erick Green added 14 points and five assists for Virginia Tech, which shot 44.6 percent from the floor (25 of 56).
Mitchell and Antwan Carter paced Longwood with 14 points each. The Lancers shot just 37 percent from the floor (17 of 46).