Louisville tops No. 19 Virginia Tech 73-71 in ACC showdown

Louisville tops No. 19 Virginia Tech 73-71 in ACC showdown

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — David Johnson scored 17 points, including a crucial free throw with five seconds left, and Louisville withstood a missed 3-pointer try at the buzzer, holding off No. 19 Virginia Tech 73-71 Wednesday night in a matchup of unbeaten Atlantic Coast Conference teams.
The Cardinals (8-1, 3-0) led 47-33 early in the second half before Tech closed within 72-71 on Keve Aluma’s two free throws with 6.6 seconds left. Johnson was fouled on the ensuing inbounds play and missed the second of two free throws, giving the Hokies (8-2, 2—1) a final chance. But, Hunter Cattoor’s long 3-point attempt bounced off the rim as time expired, allowing Louisville to escape with at least a share of first place.
Johnson made 5 of 10 shots from the field and 5 of 6 from the line. Carlik Jones scored 17 points and Jae’Lyn Withers finished with 16 points and 12 rebounds for Louisville, which won its fourth consecutive game overall and 17th in a row against the Hokies.
Jalen Cone made six 3-pointers on the way to 23 points and Nahiem Alleyne added 15 points for the Hokies, who had their four-game winning streak snapped.
POLL IMPLICATIONS
Virginia Tech rallied impressively, but might need to beat Notre Dame to avoid falling out of the rankings.
BIG PICTURE
Virginia Tech: The Hokies started quickly before soon having to catch up to Louisville’s faster tempo on both ends. Tech started 1 of 11 in the second half before Cone’s perimeter shooting helped close the gap. Shooting ultimately made the difference as the Hokies finished 9 of 30 from long range and shot 43% overall.
Louisville: The Cardinals trailed 11-0 before a quick timeout changed everything. The Cardinals emerged energized and answered with a 9-0 run and commanded the pace. They wobbled down the stretch but held on with timely free throws from Johnson and Quinn Slazinski (10 points).
UP NEXT
Virginia Tech hosts Notre Dame on Sunday night in the first of two games in three days. No. 21 Duke visits on Tuesday.
Louisville plays next Wednesday (1/13) at Wake Forest after Saturday’s scheduled game against Georgia Tech was postponed following positive tests within the Yellow Jackets’ program..
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