Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Virginia, Virginia Tech look to enjoy home cooking

Wednesday's previews

Game Three for the Cavaliers is also the first game of the Joanne Boyle Reunion Tour, as High Point is coached by Jennifer Hoover, a former Cavaliers assistant who also spent three years as Boyle's assistant at Cal. (Read more about him here). In addition, one of High Point's current assistants, DeUnna Hendrix, was recruited by and played for Boyle at Richmond. Before the month is out the Cavaliers will also have games against her former team (California, coached by former Boyle assistant Lindsay Gottlieb) and the head coach Boyle served under for nine years (Gail Goestenkors of Texas). Based on how the Panthers handled VCU (an 82-67 victory Friday), this looms as the Cavaliers' toughest test to date. Still, Virginia's defense has been gradually becoming more suffocating - they allowed 57 points to exhbition foe Alaska-Anchorage, 48 to Appalachian State and 38 to Providence. At this rate, High Point is due for just 28 points, right? Virginia 65, High Point 49

Speaking of reunions, this game returns Charlotte assistants Karen Lange and Angela Crosby, both of whom formerly coached at Tech, back to Blacksburg. Crosby was a Hokies assistant the past three seasons so the 49ers should know quite a bit about the Hokie players' tendencies. Rebounding is also a concern for Tech, as the 49ers have enjoyed massive edges on the boards in their two games - including a staggering 61-20 advantage Sunday against Arkansas State - which Tech lost the battle on the glass (42-36) in their victory at Old Dominion. Still, like the Hokies the 49ers are adapting to a new coach (Cara Consuegra), and this will be the 49ers' first road game. In addition, the Hokies almost beat these guys last year in Charlotte (60-58). We're still not totally sure what to expect from the Hokies, and we're not sure Dennis Wolff is, either. But we were encouraged enough with Tech's performance in Norfolk to think they can make this home opener a success, too. Virginia Tech 62, Charlotte 58

The Highlanders certainly looked impressive in Saturday's 100-42 victory over Eastern Mennonite, but since the Royals are Division III the game had an exhibition look to it. Winston-Salem State is currently in the Division II CIAA, but the school spent the past few years gearing up to re-classify to Division I before recognizing its lack of resources and wisely talking itself out of it. In other words, the school still has its share of Division I-caliber athletes, and the Lady Rams gave a decent accounting of themselves Saturday in a 9-point loss at UNC Asheville. Still, this is a game the Highlanders should definitely win, probably going away. Radford 69, Winston-Salem State 44

The Spartans shot a school Division I-record 56.6 percent in their season-opening 80-58 win at Texas Southern, and appear to have chosen wisely in selecting a winnable opponent for their 2011-12 debut at Echols Arena. This game is also the first half of a doubleheader with the NSU men's team, so the Spartans women's team should have a nice crowd in place during the second half to cheer them on. This Spartans team is still a work in progress, but they'll have a great opportunity today to give those fans plenty to cheer about. Game will be a homecoming of sorts for five Chowan players from the Hampton Roads area, including leading scorer Ransheda Jennings of Suffolk's King's Fork High. Norfolk State 70, Chowan 54

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