CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — Seth Allen scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half as hot-shooting Virginia Tech held off Clemson 82-81 on Sunday, sending the Tigers to their sixth straight Atlantic Coast Conference loss.
The Hokies (15-4, 4-3 ACC) shot 60.9 percent (14 of 23) in the second half and 54.7 percent overall to win for the third time in the past four games. Allen made five of his six shots — including three 3-pointers — in the final 20 minutes and had a critical steal with 90 seconds left to keep Virginia Tech out front.
The Tigers (11-8, 1-6) appeared to take the lead down 70-69 as Jaron Blossomgame’s shot with 3:48 left was rolling around and ready to fall in when teammate Sidy Djitte, attempting a tip in, knocked it away.
Chris Clarke soon followed with a three-point play and Allen hit a crushing 3-pointer with 29 seconds left to seal things for the Hokies.
Clemson got within 80-78 with 5.9 seconds left on Blossomgame’s 3-pointer. But Justin Bibbs hit two foul shots to seal things.
Blossomgame and Avry Holmes had 20 points each for Clemson, whose ACC losing streak is its longest since dropping seven straight to end the 2012-13 season.
Holmes hit a 3-pointer for Clemson as time ran out to end the scoring.
Zach LeDay had 16 points and Ahmed Hill had 11 for the Hokies.
THE BIG PICTURE
Virginia Tech: The Hokies came in as one of the ACC’s best shooting teams and Clemson’s defense could not slow them down early on as they made 15 of 30 shots. Tech also had a knack for taking off whenever the Tigers got close, a trait that could serve the Hokies well as league play continues. Zach LeDay led the way for Virginia Tech, coming off the bench to score 12 points that included a 3-pointer and a three-point play.
Clemson: Tigers coach Brad Brownell bases his program on tight defense. But Clemson has struggled in that department so far this year, eighth in ACC defense overall. Adjust for only league games and the Tigers are an embarrassing 11th giving up nearly 80 points a game this season.
Virginia Tech plays at No. 9 North Carolina on Thursday night.
Clemson travels to Pittsburgh next Saturday.