Sunday, March 20, 2011

Hokies Eliminated From N.I.T.

(AP) Gregg Marshall’s return to the area where he spent his youth couldn’t have gone much better.
His team made sure of it.

Joe Ragland’s layup with 2.6 seconds left in overtime lifted Wichita State to a 79-76 victory over Virginia 
Tech in the second round of the NIT on Sunday.

The Shockers (26-8) advanced to play the College of Charleston on Tuesday night.

It made for a sweet return for Marshall, who graduated from Cave Spring High school in Roanoke, Va., just a 45-minute drive from the Virginia Tech campus, and attended college at Randolph-Macon College near Richmond.

“I grew up coming to basketball games here and football games at Lane Stadium,” he said. “I’ve got some very good friends waiting on me as soon as I’m done here. I can’t wait to visit with them. … I’ve got a lot of people I want to touch and thank for sharing this experience.”

Ragland made it possible.

His shot came after the Hokies’ Terrell Bell had made a layup to tie the game at 76 with nine seconds remaining. Ragland raced up the court, and Marshall decided against calling a timeout to set up a play. It 
worked as Ragland got into the lane to hit the go-ahead shot.

“(Garrett) Stutz was kind of wide open, and he was calling for the ball, so I was trying to get it to him,” Ragland said. “(Erick) Green cut me off pretty well, so I just avoided him, and I thought there wasn’t much time left. So I shot a floater toward the basket and it went in.”

Virginia Tech (22-12) called a timeout following Ragland’s shot, but Malcolm Delaney stepped out of bounds with a second left and never had a chance to tie the game.

“We had our chances,” Greenberg said. “We wish we had two defensive plays back – the 3 by [J.T.] Durley [with 47 seconds left in regulation] and then not stopping the ball at the end. We needed to get two stops, and we didn’t get two stops. You’ve got to give them credit.”

Murry led a balanced Wichita State attack with 15 points. Graham Hatch added 14 as five Shockers finished in double figures.

Delaney paced the Hokies with a game-high 30 points. It marked his ninth game of 30 points or more in his career and will go down as his postseason high.

Erik Green added 17 points for the Hokies, while Jeff Allen had 10 before fouling out with 6:12 remaining in regulation.

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