Larkin leads Miami over Virginia Tech
Coral Gables, FL (Sports Network) - Shane Larkin scored 22 points and dished out six assists, while Kenny Kadji added 20 points and six rebounds, as No. 5 Miami opened up a big lead by the half and cruised the rest of the way past Virginia Tech, 76-58.
Trey McKinney Jones added 11 points for the Hurricanes (23-4, 14-1 ACC), who played with purpose after suffering their first conference loss of the season over the weekend at Wake Forest.
"We exhibited focus, got ahead by a substantial margin at halftime," said Miami head coach Jim Larranaga.
Erick Green led Virginia Tech (12-16, 3-12) with 16 points, while C.J. Barksdale added 12 points and seven boards for the Hokies, who have lost 10 of 11.
"We weren't able to capitalize on the offensive end," Virginia Tech coach James Johnson admitted. "We needed to take advantage of the opportunity we had."
The Hurricanes came out with an abundance of energy, jumping to a 9-2 lead after four straight points from Larkin. Once the initial surge subsided, the Hurricanes hit a lull, and the Hokies clawed back within 15-14 on Green's jumper with just under 10 minutes to go.
The momentum swings continued, but this time, Miami's flurry wasn't fleeting. Durand Scott's two free throws kicked off a 23-5 scoring stretch to end the half. Larkin's layup gave Miami its first double-digit lead at 26-16, and Kadji's trey opened a 33-18 advantage.
The Hokies made just one field goal on 10 attempts in the final 9:53, allowing Miami to expand out to a 38-19 lead with McKinney Jones' tip-in in the closing seconds.
Miami kept its collective foot on the pedal in the second half, opening a 62-37 lead on Rion Brown's three-pointer just before the 10-minute mark. That margin was the high-water mark, but the Hurricanes were never threatened throughout the second half.
Scott was benched at the game's outset because he was late to a Wednesday morning shootaround ... Miami leads the all-time series, 13-10 ... Virginia Tech fell to 2-7 on the road this season ... Miami hade 50 percent of its shots, while Virginia Tech converted on 39.6 percent of its attempts.