Hokies work not done with victory against Duke
Virginia Tech coach Seth Greenberg said when he met with Hokies a day after they beat then-No. 1 Duke he reminded them of the goal they set before the start of the season.
''They said it was to make the NCAA tournament,'' Greenberg recounted Monday. ''And I said, 'Our goal wasn't to beat Duke, it was to make the NCAA tournament, and to make the NCAA tournament, we've got to continue to play well. That's our main focus.'''
The Hokies' 64-60 victory against the Blue Devils on Saturday night surely enhanced their chances of getting an at-large NCAA bid. At the very least, the Hokies hope it helps minimize bad losses - like a season sweep by Virginia and a blowout at Georgia Tech.
Either way, there's still plenty to achieve.
The Hokies Tuesday host Boston College, which beat them 58-56 earlier this season, and then close the regular season at Clemson on Saturday.
''It's all about staying in the present and that's the main focus for us ... to come out and validate the success we had this past weekend,'' Greenberg said.
''We've got to get ready for Boston College,'' Bell said. ''It's Senior Night, and I know me, Malcolm and Jeff don't want to lose on our last night. ... It's a good thing for us that we got the win, but we definitely want to get the win on Tuesday night, too.''
Greenberg knows the buzz created by the big victory will still be all over campus come Tuesday, but saw against Duke that his seniors are not willing to let up even a little.
The Hokies trailed by six with 7 minutes left before staging their comeback.
''In the 6-minute timeout - it was the 8-minute timeout but there was about six minutes left - looking in their eyes, you could see that that light bulb went on,'' the coach said, ''and I didn't know if we were going to win, but they weren't going to back down.''
Despite injuries that find four players expected to contribute heavily on the bench and out for the season, the rotation of eight scholarship players left has melded. Greenberg almost went player by player in detailing how they each did something big Saturday night.
''Our team is better right now than we were when we started,'' Delaney, the team's scoring leader, said after having as many assists - four - as baskets. ''It's just because we play so well together. We know what works, we find the hot hand, we get stops when we need to.''
Greenberg hopes that continues, and thinks his fortunes are in good hands.
''I think,'' he said, ''that this group understands what's at stake.''