BLACKSBURG, Va. -- Dorenzo Hudson and Tyrone Garland scored 18 points each and Virginia Tech took command with a 23-6 first-half run Monday night to beat Monmouth 91-46 in the opening round of the preseason NIT.
Freshman Robert Brown led the Hokies with 19 points and Jarell Eddie added 13. The Hokies (2-0) will play George Mason or FUI, who had the late game, on Tuesday at Cassell Coliseum.Ed Waite scored 12 points to lead the Hawks (0-2), who trailed 42-24 at halftime, before going on to miss 10 of their first 11 shots as the Hokies left no question about the outcome with a 19-2 run.That gave them a 61-26 lead with 12 minutes to play, and gave Hokies coach Seth Greenberg an opportunity to rest Hudson, Green and power forward Victor Davila for the rest of the game.Brown had 17 after the break, and Garland had 14. At one point, they were on the court with freshmen Dorian Finney-Smith, Joey van Zegeren and C.J. Barksdale. With more than five minutes left, Greenberg sent senior walk-on Joey Racer into the game to loud cheers.The performance by Hudson was especially encouraging for the Hokies. He missed most of last season with a right foot injury and is being counted on to be among the Hokies' scoring leaders as they work early in the season to find replacements for Malcolm Delaney and Jeff Allen.Hudson, who did most of his scoring on backdoor cuts and layups, had 12 points and Green and Eddie eight each by halftime. The Hokies shot 64 percent, the Hawks just 29 percent.Under first-year coach King Rice, a former point guard under Dean Smith at North Carolina, the Hawks are playing their first nine games on the road.---Follow Hank on Twitter at http://twitter.com/hankkurzjr