The big exam
Until last week with their peer opener tournament in the Bahamas (Baha Mar Hoops Pink Flamingo Championship), the Hokie women’s basketball team had not had a peer program this season. That had been a bit of a nuisance for some sports analysts as they gauged how they would be talking about and voting on the Hokies. Well, maybe the next poll that comes out will be a little bit more interested.
The Hokies had already played a close game with Kentucky when they held onto an early massive lead to grind the last three of four and go through 82-74. The game featured long pitch times for the starters and some real clutch struggles in the last quarter to keep the Wildcats from coming all the way back.
Another leader comes off the bench
November 23 turned out to be a very different competition. The Hokies’ regular starters didn’t play as much in this contest, and the bench became much more important. Scoring was led by… wait for it… Kayana Traylor off the bench at 18. Traylor might have come off the bench but she ended up spending 32 minutes on the court so maybe the start wasn’t that important anyway. Part of that was 7-8 free throws with 4 assists and a steal.
Traylor’s superb performance from the pick was one thing, but the usual suspects made it big too! Center Liz Kitley was just a single bucket off the top spot with 17 points and another double-double with 10 rebounds. She bolstered the defense with 2 blocks and a steal. I really don’t think she minded missing the point by a bucket, but her one missed free throw might give her a naughty finger. But Traylor missed one too.
Of course, junior guard Georgia Amoore was right behind them with 15 points, doing basketball quarterback stuff with 6 assists, three 3-pointers and all of her 4 free throws. Amoore led the team in ground time, spending every two minutes of the game out there. Did we mention there was a significant entry from the bank (which was short for this competition)? D’asia Gregg also got court time. Gregg came on after 21 minutes with a nice 8 points and 4 rebounds. Even Taylor Geiman and Clara Ford got a chance to take their time.
The departure was completed by Traylor
So the game was crowned by Traylor, who conceded her last two free throws with 11 seconds left and the clock went back to 0 without another bucket from either side. It was a full game for a smaller team against another peer opponent. The status of the tournament does not appear to have been made public. There was no ‘championship game’ and it looked more like an opportunity for the invited teams to enjoy the sub-tropical weather and compete against some top-tier opponents.
The Virginia Tech Hokies women’s basketball team ended up being more quality than either Kentucky or Mizzou really wanted to stomach.