Just when the Wolfpack appeared to have found an offensive groove, stepping out of the halftime locker room and cutting a nine-point Virginia Tech lead to just two, Delaney had an answer. The junior guard responded by draining three 3-pointers before the Wolfpack could put another point on the scoreboard. That barrage seemed to suck the life out of the visiting Pack, allowing the Hokies to cruise to a 71-59 win on Wednesday night at Cassell Coliseum.
With the win the Hokies (22-7, 9-6 ACC) sweep the regular season series against State (16-14, 4-11), snapping the Pack's two-game winning streak and its own three-game losing skid. The Pack has one game remaining in the regular season, taking on Boston College in Raleigh on Sunday afternoon.
Giveaways hurt the Pack on the offensive end, particularly in the first half, when the Pack committed 13 of its 20 turnovers. The Hokies coughed the ball up just 10 times - the first time in three games the Pack has lost the turnover battle and its highest turnover total in its last six.
The Pack shot just 40 percent from the floor and hit only 4-of-16 from behind the arc. The Hokies shot 45 percent from the floor but were also cold behind the 3-point line, with Delaney the only player on the team to make a 3-point shot.
Javi Gonzalez led the Pack with 16 points on 6-of-13 shooting but had just two assists and four turnovers on the night. Tracy Smith had 12 points but was just 4-of-11 from the field and grabbed only four rebounds. Dennis Horner continued his solid rebounding effort, leading the team with eight boards while scoring 11 points. Scott Wood, who was replaced in the starting rotation by CJ Williams, came off the bench to score nine points.
The Pack jumped out to a quick lead, but turnovers quickly cost the visitors that advantage. A 3-pointer from Julius Mays gave the Pack a three-point advantage with five minutes left in the half, but the Hokies went on a 14-2 tear to end the half to take a 31-22 lead into the locker room.
By the time the final buzzer sounded on the first half, the Pack had already committed 13 turnovers in the game while the Hokies had just three. Those 13 turnovers were more than the Pack all game against Miami on Saturday. The Pack also shot just 41 percent from the floor while the Hokies hit 48 percent of its shots.
But the Pack bounced back out of the locker room, quickly cutting the lead to two points before the Hokies responded. Delaney hit three 3-pointers before the Pack scored its next point, extending the lead back out to double digits for the first time all night.
The Pack cut the game back into single digits several times over the final 10 minutes, but could never put together a serious run to challenge the Hokies. The closest the Pack would get would be an eight points with less than five minutes in the game, but a scoring drought over the next minute ended any comeback hopes.