No. 10 Virginia Tech handles Boston College

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BLACKSBURG, Va. (VT Athletics) -- Nickeil Alexander-Walker scored a game-high 25 points and No. 10 Virginia Tech rallied from a second-half deficit to register a 77-66 victory over Boston College in an ACC game played Saturday at Carilion Clinic Court.

With the win, the Hokies moved to 13-1 overall, 2-0 in the ACC and are off to their best start since the 1982-83 team opened the season with a 14-1 record. Tech has now won eight straight games and beat Boston College for the fifth straight time. The Eagles fell to 9-4, 0-1.

Alexander-Walker made 9 of 14 from the floor for the Hokies, who overcame a cold-shooting first half in which they made just 10 baskets and trailed 32-30 at halftime. But Tech shot 55.6 percent in the second half (15 of 27) and outscored Boston College by 13 to beat the Eagles.

Boston College (9-4, 0-1) led early in the second half, but Virginia Tech took control with an 11-0 run. Alexander-Walker scored six of those points as the Hokies took a 43-36 lead and never trailed again.

Tech led by as many as 16 in the second half on two occasions, with the final time coming following a layup by Kerry Blackshear Jr. with 5:32 remaining. Boston College cut the lead to eight twice in the final three minutes, but got no closer.

The Hokies maintained that lead because of their proficiency from the free-throw line. The Hokies made 9 of their final 11 attempts in the final 9:16 and made 21 of 25 for the game.

Blackshear added 20 points for Virginia Tech, hitting 6 of 7 from the floor and 8 of 9 from the free-throw line. Justin Robinson scored 12 and had five assists.

Jordan Chatman paced the Eagles with 18 points. Star guard Ky Bowman, who scored 44 points in the Eagles' loss to Hartford on Monday, scored just 14 against the Hokies. He did not hit a field goal in the final 18:31 and scored just two points on free throws.

Boston College shot just 39.6 percent (19 of 48).


Virginia Tech head coach Buzz Williams
(On any halftime adjustments)
"Nah. We do the same thing offensively every game. It just looks better when we made it. Like I said against Notre Dame [after the Hokies shot poorly in the first half against the Irish on Tuesday], we're running the same plays. It just looks pretty when you make it."

(On Wabissa Bede's defensive performance against BC's Ky Bowman)
"I thought it was his best game as a college player. I don't think it was close. He had two fouls … and he's guarding as offensive a 6-5 and under guy as there is in the country. You can't take him off the floor. You couldn't take him off the floor."

Forward Nickeil Alexander-Walker
(On the team's eighth straight win)
"Another win is great. We'll take any wins we can get. We're thankful, we're grateful, but we're not going to be complacent. Tomorrow, we'll let this go and try to get better."

• Despite leading the nation in 3-point field-goal percentage coming into the game (45.3), Virginia Tech shot just 27.3 percent from beyond the arc (6 of 22). The Hokies' six 3-pointers were their fewest in a game this season.

• Tech out-rebounded the Eagles 39-25. The Hokies are now 9-0 on the season when out-rebounding their opponent.

• The Hokies' 21 made free throws were a season high and their 25 attempts tied a season high.

• Alexander-Walker set a career high in scoring in an ACC game. His previous high of 19 came against Syracuse on Dec. 31, 2017.

• Alexander-Walker has scored in double figures in all 13 games in which he has played this season and scored at least 20 points in seven games. He is fifth in the ACC in scoring (18.8).

• Robinson's five assists give him 526 assists for his career at Virginia Tech. He needs just 17 more to move into second place on the Hokies' all-time list and 21 more to move into the top spot. Malcolm Delaney is second and Bimbo Coles is the record holder.

• Blackshear has scored at least 20 points in back-to-back ACC games for the first time in his career. He has scored in double figures in 12 of 14 games this season, including six straight.

The Hokies take on Georgia Tech in Atlanta on Wednesday night. The game tips at 7 p.m.