Published: Sat, March 17, 2018
Technology | By Russell Knight

Alabama will get Villanova thanks to its emerging star

Alabama will get Villanova thanks to its emerging star

Wilson's 10th consecutive start will come in his first NCAA Tournament game when the eighth-seeded Hokies face Alabama on Thursday night. If John Petty (20 points on 6-of-9 shooting) can have another huge game, they'll have a chance.

It's hard to argue that the Hokies or Crimson Tide didn't deserve the seed they received. No. 9 seed clash was close. Notre Dame made good use of their 25 trips to the free throw line, converting on 21 of them (84.0 percent).

Bibbs has been shooting a career low 39.1% from three, but Bibbs has been able to make some big threes in big moments for the Hokies and won't be intimidated by the stage.

Virginia Tech simply didn't have an answer down the stretch for Sexton or his ability to facilitate.

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Alabama was led, as usual, by its star point guard Collin Sexton.

Either way, Williams wishes his point guard got more credit than he does nationally - the coach speculated it's because he has a lack of "polish" as a speaker, and doesn't do as much stumping as other coaches. And rather than force shots late, Sexton tried to get to the rim.

While Sexton is the key player for the Tide, he has some capable teammates. He did a nice job carving up Virginia Tech's defense in the second half. Robinson had a team-high 19 points and a game-high seven assists. The Tigers spent Friday through Sunday in Baton Rouge, La., where they were swept by LSU in three games. Virginia Tech grabbed a 29-27 lead on a 3-pointer by Chris Clarke with 7:59 remaining. They had 28 free throw attempts, while Alabama had 15. He shot 6-for-10 after the break, including 10-for-14 at the free throw line.

The Hokies finished 21-12 overall, 10-8 in the ACC, but all they care about right now is the fact that they finished 0-1 in the NCAA tournament. The Wildcats covered a big number on the betting line in their tournament opener; can they cover another one here? Avery Johnson told the media yesterday that a game-time decision will be made about Hall. UA got significant help from its bench, with its reserves outscoring the Hokies bench 36-24, while also outrebounding VT, 26-22 for the game.

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Either way, Alabama doesn't have a lot of guys they can look to as scoring options outside of Sexton. The performance of the Hokies will eventually depend on the performance of Robinson.

Wilson has experienced the lows at Virginia Tech - two last-place finishes as a starting point guard his freshman and sophomore seasons.

The fact it took Sexton to embrace Johnson's message until March hardly matters.

Devin Wilson's basketball career at Virginia Tech has been circuitous to say the least. The question is which teams will show up tonight. And the event delivered a thrilling first round game vs. (9) Alabama at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh - however, one in which the Hokies came up short. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week's top games.

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