#5 VIRGINIA TECH VS #12 FGCU: NCAA TOURNAMENT PREVIEW

College Park, MD- #12 seed and #20 nationally ranked (USA Today) FGCU (29-2), faces #5 and #16 nationally ranked (AP) Virginia Tech (23-9), Friday afternoon at 2:30 PM, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, in the Spokane Region, from the Xfinity Center.

Stats (#12 FGCU):

The Eagles average 78.4 ppg, shoot 43.9% (872/1987) from the field, and 32.8% (367/1120) from beyond the arc. FGCU averages 35.0 team rebounds per game. The Eagles dish out 17.7 assists, 10.1 steals, and 3.2 blocks per game. The Eagles average 11.4 team turnovers per game.

Stats (#5 VT):

The Hokies average 70.5 ppg, shoot 44.2% (797/1803) from the field, and 36.3% (275/757) from beyond the arc. Virginia Tech averages 36.4 team rebounds per game. The Hokies dish out 14.3 assists, 4.5 steals, and 3.5 blocks per game. Virginia Tech averages 12.9 team turnovers per game.

Players To Watch For (#12 FGCU):

6’1 JR G Kierstan Bell 23.2 ppg, 7.4 rpg

5’3 SR G TK Morehouse 15.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg

5’7 GR G Kendall Spray 11.1 ppg, 2.7 rpg

Players To Watch For (#5 VT):

6’6 JR C Elizabeth Kitley 17.4 ppg, 9.9 rpg

5’9 GR G Aisha Sheppard 13.4 ppg, 3.2 rpg

5’6 SO G Georgia Ammore 11.1 ppg, 2.4 rpg

Overview:

#12 seed FGCU heads into the first round of the NCAA Tournament on a 7 game winning streak, and faces a #5 seed Virginia Tech team that lost to NC State in the ACC Semifinals. Head Coach Kenny Brooks is in his 6th season leading the Hokies. The Hokies are led offensively by 6’6 JR C Elizabeth Kitley, who averages 17.7 ppg. Kitley was named ACC Player of the Year, First Team All-ACC, and All-Defensive Team. She was named the Kay Vow Scholar Athlete of the Year, and also a Semifinalist for the Naismith Award. 5’9 GR G Aisha Sheppard is the programs all time leading scorer, and only Hokie to score 1,800 points. She also owns the ACC WBB record for most 3 point field goals made. Aisha was an AP All-American Honorable Mention First Team All-ACC 2020 (Coaches), and 2021 (Blue Ribbon Panel and Coaches)

#12 FGCU is led offensively by Kierstan Bell, who averages 23.2 ppg, and was named ASUN Player of the Year, and ASUN 1st Team. Head Coach Karl Smesko was named ASUN Coach of the Year, and fellow teammate TK Morehouse (15.0 ppg), was also named ASUN 1st Team.

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