GW ends losing streak at Va. Tech

The GW men’s basketball team used a strong second half to break its four-game losing streak with a 64-50 win at Virginia Tech Wednesday.

GW entered the game in desperate need of a win. The Colonials had lost four games in a row – and their invitation to the NCAA Tournament had become uncertain.

The Colonials led only 28-26 at halftime, and the Hokies (9-16, 4-11 A-10) kept the game close in the first 10 minutes of the second half. GW led 50-45 with 7:25 left in the game. However, the Colonials began to pull away, opening a 59-48 lead with four minutes remaining.

GW held Virginia Tech to 33 percent shooting in the second half. The Colonials made 44 percent of their second-half shots to overcome horrible free throw shooting. GW made only 18 of its 37 free throw attempts. However, the Colonials committed only eight turnovers and out-rebounded the Hokies 46-32.

Shawnta Rogers led GW with 16 points, six rebounds and five assists, and Alexander Koul had 12 points and 10 rebounds. Rolan Roberts led Virginia Tech with 18 points and six rebounds.

The victory moved the Colonials back into a tie for second place in the Atlantic 10 West Division. GW and Xavier are both 10-5 in the conference and trail Dayton by one game. The top two teams in the division will get a first-round bye in the A-10 Tournament March 4-7 in Philadelphia.

The win was the Colonials’ first in 18 days and improved the team to 21-7 on the season. One more victory will give Coach Mike Jarvis his winningest regular season at GW.

Yegor Mescheriakov continued to struggle offensively for GW. The junior forward made four of 11 shots and scored nine points. Mescheriakov has made less than 30 percent of his shots during the last five games.

“Yegor is going to have to learn that when one part of your game isn’t working, you have to concentrate on other parts,” Jarvis said.

GW got strong play from reserves J.J. Brade and Francisco de Miranda. Brade had eight points, and de Miranda had 10 points and seven rebounds in 17 minutes of playing time. Freshman forward Antxon Iturbe has missed two games due to a strees fracture.

Neither team shot well in the first half, with GW making only 34 percent of its shots and Virginia Tech shooting 38 percent. The Colonials missed all eight of their first-half three-pointers, and were led in the first half by Koul’s eight points and seven rebounds.

GW will finish its regular season against St. Bonaventure Saturday at the Smith Center.

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