Villanova basketball blows lead against Virginia Tech

Villanova basketball was undefeated (2-0) after the 2K Empire Classic over the Thanksgiving holiday. An opportunity to play a game against Virginia Tech came to the surface, and it was an offer head coach Jay Wright could not refuse.

With all the uncertainty and lack of games due to the coronavirus, no one can blame Wright for wanting to stick around and play this one.

The game against Virginia Tech was played on Saturday at Mohegan Sun. It was a matchup between two ranked teams, the Wildcats being No. 3 and the Hokies being No.18.

Villanova had a healthy lead until the wheels fell off late in the second half, and the game went into overtime. Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Virginia Tech took the win in the last minutes of overtime.

The big question here is, what went wrong?

Villanova became comfortable

The game between the two ranked teams was back and forth all night. At halftime, it was all tied up at 29. Fast forward to the second half, and the Wildcats took over the game’s pace and momentum. Well, so I thought.

After the 11-0 run from the Wildcats, it appeared that Virginia Tech changed gears quickly. The Hokies ended up fighting back and took the lead with just seconds left in the game. The score was 64-62 in favor of VT when Justin Moore drew a critical foul that led him to the foul line. He made both foul shots, and the teams entered overtime.

Villanova was outplayed in overtime

It may have seemed like the Wildcats had the momentum to put the game to rest in overtime after Moore hit the clutch foul shots. But, just like that, Justyn Mutts, Virginia Tech junior forward, went off and scored five straight points in OT. The lead by Virginia Tech never let up after that, and the game ended with the Hokies beating the Wildcats 81-73.

If you take anything away from the game, it should be that Villanova just could not finish. The Wildcats had the 12-point lead but couldn’t hold it off. The blown lead ended in the Wildcats losing their first game in the 2020-21 season.

Coach Wright’s postgame comments

After playing three games in four nights, the Villanova Wildcats won two out of the three. Now, anyone can make excuses about the lack of preparation, player tiredness or whatever else people want to say.

The one man who did not and will not make excuses for Villanova basketball is Wright. Even after the loss, he looked at the experience and game as a positive.

Wright talked to reporters after the game Saturday night and said this.

“Whether it did or not, I don’t want to take away from what Virginia Tech did because we chose to do this, and it was good for us. This is a good game for us early in the year. We played three really good teams, and because Virginia Tech did so many things well execution-wise, it exposed us, and that’s how young guys learn. So I look at this as a positive.”

Wright went on to talk highly of the Virginia Tech team and coaching staff.