Hokies aim for # 1,500 Sunday win over Merrimack


BLACKSBURG, Virginia – The Virginia Tech men’s basketball team will aim for its 1,500th win on the schedule on Sunday, taking on Merrimack at 4 p.m. ET inside the Cassell Coliseum.

Fans can catch Saturday’s game on regional sports networks. Evan Lepler (play-by-play) and Brian Oliver (analysis) will have the call.

List of affiliates for how to watch RSN.

Last time, Tech (4-0) beat Saint Francis (Pa.), 85-55. Behind 18 points each of Nahiem Alleyne and Keve Aluma, the Hokies recorded their highest offensive performance of the season. Darius Maddox scored 11 points, a career-high, and didn’t miss a shot on the ground (4-4).

Sunday’s game between Virginia Tech and Merrimack is the first meeting between the two schools. However, it will be the Hokies’ second consecutive encounter against a team from the Northeast Conference (NEC). Tech is 10-2 all-time against current NEC members.

After Sunday’s game, the Hokies will be back on the court Wednesday at 9:30 p.m. ET against No.11 Memphis in the NIT season draw in Brooklyn, NY. The game will be televised on ESPN2.

GAME INFORMATION
Sunday November 21 | 4 p.m. ET
Cassell Coliseum (Blacksburg, Virginia)
v Merrimack (3-2, 0-0 NEC)
Series: First meeting
Play Notes: Virginie Tech | Merrimack

TV broadcast
RSN
Read by read: Evan lepler
Analyst: Brian Olivier

Local radio
Virginia Tech Sports Network
Read by read: Jon laaser
Analyst: Mike Burnop

THE SERIES
• First meeting.
• Sunday will be the Hokies’ second straight game against a Northeast Conference (NEC) team.
• Tech is 10-2 all-time against current NEC members.

A VICTORY WOULD BE …
• Be the eighth consecutive non-conference Hokies victory in the regular season.
• Put Tech on the # 1,500 winning schedule. If Tech made the leap on Sunday, it would become the 90th Division I mbb schedule to do so.
• Move the Hokies to 5-0 for the first time since 2019-2020 when Tech opened the season 6-0.

CHASING WIN PROGRAM NO. 1,500
• With a victory Sunday over Merrimack, Virginia Tech will claim its 1,500th victory in program history.
• Currently, Providence and Tech are tied for 90th all-time wins in NCAA Division I history at 1,499. The Friars won’t play again until Monday against Northwestern. This gives the Hokies the first chance to become the 90th men’s basketball program in Division I history to achieve 1,500 wins.
• Tech would join its ACC counterparts in North Carolina, Duke, Syracuse, Notre Dame, NC State, Louisville, Virginia, Pitt and Wake Forest as the 10 conference programs that have reached the milestone.

WHO TO WATCH
Justyn mutts turned into a “Human Highlight Reel” with his two Tomahawk slams in the last two games.
• Storm Murphy’s lob and arrival at Justyn Mutts against Radford was No. 1 in SportsCenter’s Top 10 on the morning of November 16.

SCOUTING MERRIMACK
• Merrimack ended a losing two-game skid Friday night by shipping Lehigh, 55-45. Now the NEC members face a quick turnaround as they travel to Blacksburg to take on the Hokies in less than 48 hours from the end of Merrimack’s game.
• The Warriors finished the 2020-21 season at 9-9 with all games against the NEC competition.
• Jordan Minor and Mikey Watkins are the best returns for Merrimack. The duo landed in the All-NEC third team last season.
• Minor paces the Warriors’ offense at 10.2 points per game, followed by Watkins at 9.6 and Mykel Derring at 9.0.
• Merrimack is under the direction of sixth-year head coach Joe Gallo. He posted a career record of 93-56 at the helm of his alma mater.
• Prior to the Warriors’ transition from Division II to Division I, Gallo and his program completed a series of three consecutive appearances in the NCAA tournament in 2018-19.
• Merrimack is averaging 17.8 rebound on the glass per game.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY CHRISTMAS STORE GAME
• Bring a toy to Cassell to donate to the Montgomery County Christmas Store!

ON A NON-CON ROLL
• The Hokies are on a seven-game winning streak in the non-conference regular season.
• Tech was 7-1 in the non-conference regular season last season, evidenced by wins over Villanova and USF in the Air Reserve Basketball Hall of Fame swing tournament in Uncasville , Connecticut.

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