Virginia Tech rallies to beat Miami in OT

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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- The Virginia Tech Hokies overcame a 10-point deficit in the last five minutes of regulation and went to beat the Miami Hurricanes 61-60 in overtime Sunday afternoon in an Atlantic Coast Conference opener featuring two teams picked to finish in the bottom third of the conference.

Forward Jarell Eddie hit a baseline jumper to give the Hokies (7-3 1-0) a 61-60 lead with 17.4 seconds remaining, and the Hurricanes (5-5, 0-1) missed a chance to tie it when guard Garrius Adams could make only one of two free throws with 7.1 seconds left.

Forward Donnovan Kirk rebounded Adams' miss, but his rushed follow-up attempt went behind the backboard and out of bounds to Tech with just 1.9 seconds remaining.

The Hurricanes nearly made a steal on the inbounds play, but the ball went out-of-bounds again to the Hokies with just 0.3 remaining.

"I wanted to step up," said Eddie, who got 15 of his game-high 24 points in the second half and overtime. "It was crunch time, and I did want to step my game up. I hadn't been playing well the majority of the half.

"Late in the half when we needed some buckets, I just wanted to step up and make plays."

Miami was leading 55-45 on Adams' 3-pointer but was outscored 11-1 in the remaining time of regulation.

Tech coach James Johnson credited his team's defense for the comeback.

"We started getting stops," he said. "We started getting stops, and everything predicates on our team on the defensive end.

"When we get stops, we're able to get out and run in transition and able to get a couple guys loose. When we got stops, it gave is a little confidence on our offensive end, too."

Tech got only two baskets in overtime -- Eddie's jumper and forward Marshall Woods' 3-pointer -- but that was enough as shooting woes continued for Miami. The Hurricanes made only 1 of 9 field-goal attempts and 2 of 4 free throws in the five-minute session.

Coach Jim Larranaga lamented his team's lack of a go-to guy down the stretch and scoring punch overall.

"They're a great group of kids to work with," he said, "but with just limited scoring ability."

The Hurricanes had three players in double figures topped by Adams' 14 points. Forward James Kelly added 12 and guard Davon Reed 10.

The Hurricanes managed to build double-digit leads twice. After going to the locker room up 31-23 at the half, they jumped out to a 13-point cushion just over four minutes deep into the second half.

The Hokies cut that down to four points just five minutes later, but once again the Hurricanes pushed that back out to 10 before the Hokies began their comeback.

Tech tied it at 56-56 on Eddie's 3-pointer with 46.2 seconds left and had a chance to win it in regulation, but Kirk blocked Eddie's 3-pointer with less than a second remaining.

The rebound went out to Tech with 0.3 on the clock, and forward Joey van Zegeren's bank shot on an inbounds play was ruled late.

NOTES: G Adam Smith and G Ben Emelogu returned from injuries for Virginia Tech. Smith, who averaged 15.0 points per game in starting the first eight games, came off the bench to score eight points in 21 minutes. Emelogu, who had missed the previous three games because of concussion-like symptoms, scored 11 points, just three off his average coming into the game, in 34 minutes. ... F Donnovan Kirk left the game with 14:17 left and the Hurricanes up 40-30 after taking a blow to the head while a going for a rebound. After spending time in the locker room, he returned with 5:42 remaining and the Hurricanes leading 52-43. He finished with six points and 11 rebounds and made two key block both in the final seconds of regulation and in the overtime. ... Both teams are going on a break for final exams. Miami's next game will be Dec. 19 at Savannah State. Tech will be 13 days between games when it plays next, facing Virginia Commonwealth in the Governor's Holiday Hoops Classic in Richmond, Va., on Dec. 21.

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