Sean Pedulla had 18 points and seven assists as Virginia Tech held off a late rally by Old Dominion in a 75-71 victory in the opening round of the Charleston (S.C.) Classic on Thursday afternoon.
Grant Basile added 15 points while Justyn Mutts contributed 11 points and nine rebounds as the Hokies (4-0) advanced to a semifinal game Friday afternoon against Penn State.
Virginia Tech led by 20 points in the first half but ODU surged after the break. Two 3-pointers by Darius Maddox in the final six minutes helped the Hokies remain in control. Maddox finished with 12 points.
Old Dominion (2-2) was led by Chaunce Jenkins, who scored a career-high 24 points and collected six rebounds. Mekhi Long added 10 points and 11 rebounds for the Monarchs, who face Furman on Friday.
ODU worked hard on the boards, outrebounding Virginia Tech 46-32. The Monarchs’ efforts paid off in the second half as they whittled the deficit into single digits.
A 3-pointer by Charles Smith IV with 9:15 to go sliced the Hokies’ lead to 53-45.
Later in the half, a 3-pointer by Imo Essien and a layup by Dericko Williams sliced the advantage to 58-52 with less than six minutes left.
But Maddox made his two treys 80 seconds apart to hike the Hokies’ lead back to double digits.
ODU made a late push. A 3-pointer by Long with 8 seconds left cut the deficit to 73-71.
But with 5 seconds left, Hunter Cattoor made two free throws to nail down the victory. Cattoor finished with 10 points.
In the first half, Basile drained two 3-pointers and made a layup to fuel a 15-2 run that gave Virginia Tech a 23-10 lead. Later in the half, Cattoor and Mutts made shots from beyond the arc during a 14-3 run that expanded the Hokies’ lead to 39-19.
Jenkins gave the Monarchs a lift at the end of the half as he made two free throws and then followed with a steal and a breakaway slam that reduced the deficit to 39-25 at the break.
–Field Level Media