-- Playing last year's lineup. We have the most experienced roster in the conference, but too often early in the year it looked like no one knew how to play with each other. Part was the rules. Part was waiting for Hanlan to take over. And part of it was working in the new talent. But those are just excuses. Saturday Jackson started and played long minutes. Clifford played extended minutes. Odio and Heckmann served in similar roles to last year. For whatever reason it worked enough. The ball movement was better and the defense was better.
-- Making 3s. Sometimes it is that simple. But I think Jackson getting more minutes helped open things up.
-- Clifford's presence close to the basket. Donahue doesn't get a pass on the season because of Clifford's injury, but having him there did keep Virginia Tech from dominating the paint offensively.
So where do we go from here? Do Owens, Magarity and Dragicevich ride the bench and we go as far as the best seven can take us? If it is that simple, then "yes." I don't think it is. Even with things looking better, the defense was still not great. Virginia Tech is also not that good.
Too much has happened and we've seen this team check out too often. I would love for them to save the season, but I won't believe it until I see it. For now though I am happy for the win and hope that they build on it. It would make these last two months more fun than the first two months of the season.